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Cincinnati saw second-highest homicide rate increase during pandemic among biggest U.S. cities, WalletHub study says

Cincinnati police investigate a homicide in Winton Hills on Oct. 14, 2021.
Cincinnati police investigate a homicide in Winton Hills on Oct. 14, 2021.(WXIX)
Published: Apr. 20, 2022 at 9:50 AM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - Cincinnati saw the second-highest homicide rate increase during the coronavirus pandemic among the nation’s 50 biggest cities, according to a WalletHub report released Wednesday.

Only New Orleans saw a higher homicide rate increase between the first quarter of 2020 through the first quarter of 2022, the study concluded.

Atlanta ranked third, followed by Baltimore, Memphis, Milwaukee, Louisville, Norfolk, Detroit and Dallas.

To determine which cities had the biggest homicide problem, WalletHub says it compared the cities based on per capita homicides in the first quarter of 2022 and the change in the number of homicides per capita in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same time in 2021 and 2020.

Source: WalletHub

Cincinnati saw a record number of homicides of 2020 with 94 killings and matched that record with another 94 homicides in 2021.

The previous high record for killings in the city in a single year was 88 in 2006.

Cincinnati only has seen more than 80 homicides now in three years: 2006, 2020 and 2021, police officials have said.

The Cincinnati Police Department’s Homicide Unit has a closure rate on its cases that is above the national average.

Cincinnati is not alone in seeing a spike in deadly violence. Cities across America and in Ohio have reported historic homicides.

On Wednesday, Cincinnati City Council is expected to pass an ordinance that will allow the city to spend $250,000 for more police overtime this summer to try to quell gun violence.

This comes one day after Interim Police Chief Teresa Theetge went before Council’s Law & Public Safety Committee to explain her Summer Safety Plan, which she says they’ve actually already begun.

Each of the city’s six district captains already submitted plans showing how they would spend overtime money putting more officers out on the streets in higher-crime areas known as “hotspots,” she told them.

“The hardest-hit areas will see an increased presence in uniformed officers. However, there will also be officers out there that they may not see. So they may have some undercover officers or detectives, civilian-clothed officers that they don’t readily see but they are still out in their community.”

The safety plan also includes community engagement programs like police cadets to try to reach the city’s youth in positive partnerships.

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