Feb 21, 2017

The U.S. cities dealing with a spike in murder rates

Patrick Semanksy / AP

The WSJ's analysis of homicide data since 1985 shows that 4 of the nation's 35 largest cities have gotten close to or exceeded the murder rate records set 25 years ago, when cities were fighting gang and drug wars.

The four worst U.S. cities: Chicago, Memphis, Milwaukee and Baltimore.

Potential reasons:

  1. In interviews with WSJ, police chiefs attributed the homicide surge to a rise in gang violence, poverty, strained community relations and lax prosecution of gun laws.
  2. They also noted that the murder surge in these cities came after highly publicized police killings of black men.
  3. Homicides are concentrated in poorer neighborhoods, but poverty levels in these areas are similar to those in Philadelphia, where the violent crime rate is at its lowest in 30 years.

But there's hope: Murder rates remain historically low in New York City and Los Angeles. Chiefs in both cities point to improved neighborhood-policing efforts in recent years.

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Coronavirus spreads to more countries as cases in South Korea surge

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

Afghanistan, Kuwait and Bahrain each reported their first cases of the novel coronavirus, Al Jazeera first reported, as infections in South Korea, Italy and mainland China continued to increase on Monday.

The big picture: As South Korea and Italy stepped up emergency measures in efforts to thwart the spread of the virus, World Health Organization officials expressed concern about infections with no clear link to China. COVID-19 has killed at least 2,619 people and infected almost 80,000 others, with all but 27 deaths occurring in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 mins ago - Health

In photos: India welcomes president with massive "Namaste Trump" rally

First Lady Melania Trump, President Trump and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend the "Namaste Trump" rally at Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, on Monday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump was addressing a massive rally after arriving with members of the U.S. first family in Ahmedabad, northwest India, Monday for a two-day visit.

Why it matters: The countries are forging deeper ties, particularly in the military dimension, as India’s location, size and economic growth making it the "obvious counterweight to China" for American policymakers, per Axios' Dave Lawler and Zachary Basu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is demonstrating the importance of the visit by holding a "Namaste Trump Rally" at a packed 110,000-capacity Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad — the world's largest cricket venue.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 56 mins ago - World

Sanders reveals free childcare plan for preschoolers

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday in El Paso, Texas. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday a new plan to guarantee free child care and pre-kindergarten to all American children from infancy to age four.

Details: In the wide-ranging interview, Sanders told Anderson Cooper he planned to pay for universal childcare with a wealth tax. "It's taxes on billionaires," he said.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy