Friday, April 16, 2010

Homicide Rate Predictions and Talk

The website Bart Lies! is still around years after Mayor Bart Peterson became, well, former Mayor Bart Peterson. It mainly focuses on keeping track of the homicide rate. Under his alias, Bart, he writes in the "About" section:

The main project for Bart Lies! these days is monitoring the homicides occurring within the boundaries of Marion County. You see, that was one of the lies, that the homicides had been reduced by the Peterson administration. As it turns out, the tally reported by local media seemed to forget about a homicide here and there, at times giveing the number 4-5 fewer than it actually was. We don’t know where they got the number but by recording and posting each one here as they occur, it’s impossible to forget about them anymore.

I've only been following local blogs for about a year. So it came as a surprise to me to here Bart's numbers actually being the same numbers used by city-county authorities. Prosecutor Carl Brizzi, as I pointed out in the comments section of this post, used the homicide rate himself on his WIBC program Crime Beat. Public Safety Director Frank Staub did so as well, more recently.

What's been disturbing is a recent trend of many of the homicides being committed by convicted felons with quite a record, but were somehow released early. Victor A. Williams, who has been charged with homicide #7 in Marion County this year, had this in his prior record:
Another repeat felon committed a homicide more recently with a record that includes forgery and robbery.

And to end on a happy note, Bart posted a graph on where he believes the homicide rate will end for this year with comparisons to past years.

We, as citizens, need to have a serious conversation with our law enforcement, legislators, and judiciary, about the early release of felons with multiple convictions. That is something we can do to reduce the bloodshed in this town.

Relevant links: Indiana Offender Database

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