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Report: Missouri Has Highest Black Homicide Rate In The Country

Photo courtesy of St. Louis Post-Dispatch

A new report has revealed that more black people are killed in Missouri than anywhere else in the country.

The annual homicide report from The Violence Policy Center studied homicide data from 2014 (the most recent year available), with their research revealing that Missouri’s homicide rate among black people was double that of the nation.

In 2014 there 250 black homicide victims in Missouri, resulting in a homicide rate of 34.98 per 100,000. The national black homicide rate in 2014 was 16.38 per 100,000, and the overall national homicide rate was 4.19 per 100,000.

The report further highlights that 87 percent of Missouri’s 250 black homicides in 2014 were gun deaths, with the average age of the deceased being 29 years old. Of that 250, 217 were men while 33 were women. For the homicides where the victim to offender relationship could be confirmed, 75 percent of victims (58 out of 77) were killed by someone they knew, while 19 victims were killed by strangers.

“The devastation homicide inflicts on black teens and adults is a national crisis that should be a top priority for policymakers to address,” the report concludes. “An important part of ending our nation’s gun violence epidemic will involve reducing homicides in the African-American community. For black victims of homicide, like all victims of homicide, guns — usually handguns — are far and away the number-one murder tool. Successful efforts to reduce America’s black homicide toll, like America’s homicide toll as a whole, must put a focus on reducing access and exposure to firearms.”

You can read more findings from the study (including the other states listed with the highest number of black homicides) here.

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