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The scene of a Sunday shooting in Southeast D.C. that killed a 17 year old. Four gunmen fired at least 100 rounds amid hundreds of people at a block party, hitting 22, per the WashPost. Photo: NBC4 via AP

Major cities saw a spike in murders this summer, even as overall crime rates remained at a generational low, according to The New York Times.

Where it stands: The average murder rate across 20 major cities averaged 37% higher at the end of June than at the end of May, the Times reports, citing University of Missouri-St. Louis criminologist Richard Rosenfeld. It increased by 6% over the same period last year.

  • "Some experts have pointed to the pandemic’s destabilization of community institutions, or theorized that people with a propensity for violence may have been less likely to heed stay-at-home orders," the Times writes.

Zoom in: 122 people have been killed in Kansas City, Mo., this year, compared to 90 at the same time last year. The city is on course to surpass its 1993 record 153 murders.

But, but, but: Crime overall and major crime are still down, with the exception of murder, aggravated assault and car theft in some places.

  • "Nationally, crime remains at or near a generational low, and experts caution against drawing conclusions from just a few months," per the Times.

Go deeper

Nov 18, 2020 - Health

Over a quarter-million people have died in the U.S. from COVID-19

Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty

The United States topped 250,000 coronavirus-related deaths on Wednesday as infections soar in nearly every pocket of every state in the country, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

Why it matters: The sharp rise in the number of cases and fatalities has accelerated calls for government action. Wednesday's news exceeded infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci's March prediction in which he said "we should be prepared" that COVID-19 could kill 240,000 Americans.

The Thanksgiving time bomb

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are at new peaks, cities and states are weighing second lockdowns, and flu season is upon us — but we're all looking the other way.

Why it matters: Pandemic fatigue has set in and the nation has collectively stopped caring just in time for the holiday season. This Thanksgiving could be catastrophic for public health.

Nov 18, 2020 - Health

Pfizer says latest data shows its coronavirus vaccine is safe and 95% effective

Photo: Dogukan Keskinkilic/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Pfizer said on Wednesday that its coronavirus vaccine is 95% effective and has no serious side effects.

The state of play: The company said they have enough safety data now and plan to request an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration "within days."