March 12, 2024

The Illinois Policy Institute finds cases of violent crime increased by 11.5% in 2023, while violent crime arrest rates dropped


CONTACT: Micky Horstman (312) 607-4977

Violent crime up 18%, arrests down 43% in Chicago over 10 years
The Illinois Policy Institute finds cases of violent crime increased by 11.5% in 2023, while violent crime arrest rates dropped

CHICAGO (March 12, 2024) – The number of violent crimes grew to its highest level in a decade last year, but the arrest rate dropped, according to a new analysis from the Illinois Policy Institute.

In 2023, violent crime was 11.5% higher than in 2022. Two of the largest factors contributing to the rise in crime came from a decade-high 30,501 instances of vehicle thefts and carjackings, and 22,569 cases of assault in 2023.

Homicides were down 14% compared with 2022 levels, but with 625 homicides the city still experienced 45% more murders than a decade earlier.

“It’s important Chicagoans have the data to understand the scope of the crime problem in the city. Since 2020, Chicago has seen an alarming uptick in criminal activity that goes against decade-long decreasing trends. Without fail, Chicagoans continue to list public safety as their overall top priority, which makes sense as the number of violent crimes increases, reaching more and more neighborhoods across the city,” said Hilary Gowins, senior vice president at the Illinois Policy Institute. 

Neighborhoods such as Museum Campus, Logan Square and Hermosa have seen the largest increases in violent crime from 2022 to 2023. Since 2013, the West Side and South Side neighborhoods have continued to see high rates of violent crime; and Fuller Park and Garfield Park were home to the highest rates in 2023.

The institute analysis showed a 18% increase in violent crimes since 2013, with a 33% decline in the number of arrests. Arrest rates hit their lowest levels in a decade in 2023, with just 10.8% of violent crimes resulting in an arrest, nearly half the rate of arrests from 2013.

“All crime is bad. Violent crime is worse. The city’s well-being isn’t just measured in the total number of crimes – the arrest rate also matters. Chicago’s dropping arrest rate signals to residents that the city isn’t equipped to handle this crime surge. City leaders need to make meaningful investments in public safety to quickly ensure Chicagoans feel safe and confident,” Gowins said.

Yet Chicago leaders have made efforts to reduce police resources. Mayor Brandon Johnson’s latest budget eliminated 833 street-cop vacancies, which goes against polling from the institute’s Lincoln Poll that shows 3 in 4 Chicago voters want a larger police force. Also, the Chicago Board of Education voted to remove all police officers from Chicago Public Schools, including schools that asked to keep officers.

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