Deep Dive: Police Data on Gun Violence in Illinois

Below is the first part of a longer article from the CU Citizens Access web site.  The article gives an overview of gun violence data maintained by police across Illinois.

Police data show gun violence a chronic, growing problem across Illinois

His name was Devon McClyde and he was 16 years old when he was caught in the crossfire of an argument while playing basketball one evening in a local park in Danville on June 8, 2016.

He died three days later – the victim of another gun crime in Central Illinois.

At least 100 people died from gunfire over the past three years and at least 500 were wounded, according to data obtained from a sample of police departments of eight small cities in downstate Illinois.

The data, obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests by the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting, is kept in different formats and is often incomplete. Yet the data show that gun violence has been a chronic issue over the past decade and that some cities have seen recent surges in shootings.

For example, Danville had eight homicides in 2017, up from two in 2015. Decatur reported nine homicides in 2017, up from six in 2015.

The statistics also reveal that increasing efforts to stop the gun violence may have not been as effective as communities and police have hoped.

Several areas have launched formal programs to decrease gun violence – such as the Don’t Shoot Initiative in Peoria and the CU Fresh Start program in Champaign and Urbana……..(Read more of this article at: