2012-07-06 / Top Stories

Most Homicide Victims Are Also Criminals

By Howard Schwach


Police at a 2011 homicide on November 23, a day when there were two homicides in Far Rockaway. Police at a 2011 homicide on November 23, a day when there were two homicides in Far Rockaway. In 2011, 515 people were killed in New York City, their deaths classified by the medical examiner as homicides, according to a report recently released by the New York City Police Department.

Nine of those people who died violently did so in Rockaway – eight of those in the confines of the 101 Precinct in Far Rockaway, the other in the confines of the 100 Precinct in Rockaway Beach.

The statistics in the report are revealing, observers say.

Of those who were killed in New York City, 61 percent were shot to death, 22 percent were stabbed, 10 percent were bludgeoned or had other blunt force trauma and five percent died by other physical force.

Thirty-eight percent died because of a dispute or for revenge; 18 percent of the murders were domestic in nature; nine percent were killed during a burglary or robbery; five percent were gang related and the rest are unknown.

Black New Yorkers, who make up 23 percent of the city’s population, represent 62 percent of those murdered. Thirty-eight percent of all victims were male blacks aged 16 to 37.

Eighty-six percent of black males aged 16 to 21 were killed by gunshot. And, while 46 percent of New Yorkers are non-Hispanic white or Asian, only 12 percent of those who were murdered fall into those classifications.

Only one in five (20 percent) of the murder victims were female. Of all the women killed, 32 percent were killed by firearms and fifty-four percent of them were involved in domestic disputes, as against 9 percent of the men.

Nearly 75 percent of those who were killed had prior arrests – 38 percent for drug sales or possession, 20 percent were on probation, parole or had an open arrest warrant at the time they died. Eleven percent were confirmed gang members.

Sixty percent of those who were killed were 16-37 years old.

Among the suspects arrested or identified for homicides, 59 percent were black, 33 percent were Hispanic, five percent were white and three percent were Asian.

Among black suspects arrested or identified for committing homicides, 83 percent of their victims were also black.

The Rockaway statistics, officials say, mirror the citywide statistics and in some cases, even exceed them.

For example, locals sources say, a larger percentage than the citywide norm of those who were arrested as suspects for committing murder on the Rockaway peninsula were minority and all of the murder victims were minorities as well.

Return to top


Email Us
Contact Us

Copyright 1999 - 2014 Wave Publishing Co. All Rights Reserved

Neighborhoods | History