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Tulane Criminologist Weighs In On N.O. Shootings/Murder Rates

Tulane Criminologist Weighs In On N.O. Shootings/Murder Rates

Tulane Criminologist Peter Scharf says a report that people are still being shot at roughly the same rate in New Orleans, they're just not dying as often raises a lot of questions.

The Advocate reports while the city's murder rate has dropped more than 20 percent, the total rate of shootings, lethal and nonlethal, has declined only 5 percent.

"I think I'd get way more worried if I thought we had a stable count of the woundings, the 34s, because that number is pretty speculative," Scharf said.

34s stands for Aggravated Assault by Shooting.

To explain why murders are down yet non-fatal shootings have stayed about the same, some officials say police have jailed the most lethal killers, leaving less deadly marksmen doing most of the shooting.

And medical officials say improved treatment of shooting victims means more victims are surviving, and that has helped to lower the murder rate.

Still, a more than 20 percent decline in the city's murder rate is good news, says Scharf.

"To see a reversal is refreshing. This is way better news than we've had," Scharf said.

 

 

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