Tracking gun violence in Philadelphia: August 10, 2020

• Philadelphia Police data indicate that 48 people were shot in the city last week, up from 43 during the previous week. The update brought the year-to-date shooting victim total to 1,139 which represents a 36.1 percent increase vs. the same period last year. An average of 27 people were shot in city each week during past five years. The latest update also reports 1,989 aggravated assaults with guns this year, up 29.5 percent vs. 2019. [Philadelphia Police]

• The most recent data from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office reports 615 arrests for aggravated assaults with guns through August 9 of this year, one percent ahead of last year’s pace. [Philadelphia District Attorney]

• Open data maintained by the Philadelphia Police now indicate that 215 people were shot in the city during the month of July, exceeding any previous month in the data set which begins in January, 2015. [Open Data Philly]

• Total homicides are now running 31 percent ahead of last year’s pace and 74 percent ahead of the pace recorded in 2014, according to the latest update to Crime Maps & Stats page on the police department’s web site. [Philadelphia Police]

Change the narrative

• Our upcoming Credible Messenger Reporting Program will compensate community representatives, community reporters and journalists from traditional newsrooms to collaborate and raise new voices to tell the story of gun violence in Philadelphia — and find solutions. Visit our home page and leave your email address to get updates.

More children getting shot

• Over the past 365 days, 17 children under age 10 have been shot in Philadelphia, according to police data you can view on our Shooting Victims Dashboard. So far during 2020, eight have been shot — three fatally — compared to just one nonfatal victim at this time last year. A total of 12 children under age 10 were shot during 2016, 2017 and 2018 combined. [Open Data Philly]

• The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that “a pattern of rising gun violence against young people” is far outpacing the increase in adult shooting victims this year.” The Inquirer reported Monday that at least 25 were people shot on Saturday and Sunday, including two 11-year-old boys.

• An average of three children have been shot per week in Philadelphia this year, according to CNN.

Say their names

• The Philadelphia Obituary Project published a list of the 48 people murdered in Philadelphia during July. Their latest profile: Shahid Davis was shot to death in 2012. [Philadelphia Obituary Project]


• The Philadelphia Tribune says “The rise in gun violence in Philadelphia underscores the urgent need to implement and successfully execute the city’s anti-violence strategy known as group violence intervention.”

Taking action

• A Citywide Rally to End Gun Violence took place Monday afternoon outside Philadelphia City Hall. [Twitter/6abcAnnie]

• The City Council of Philadelphia Special Committee on Gun Violence Prevention is scheduled to hold a public hearing “in a remote manner” Tuesday morning “to address Philadelphia’s enduring plague of gun violence by facilitating coordination among stakeholders and formulating a comprehensive gun violence prevention strategy.”

• Germantown community members and local Philadelphia journalists are invited to gather online Wednesday evening “to discuss and imagine what public safety could, and should, look like in a neighborhood impacted by overpolicing.” [Germantown Info Hub]

• The Father’s Day rally Committee is leading a The Northwest Philly Motorcade on Thursday to spread a message of peace. [Twitter/BilalQayyumq]

• Community members in West Philadelphia held an emergency meeting last week following the fatal shooting of 7-year-old Zamar Jones. [WHYY]

New statewide data resource

• A new Violence Dashboard from the Pennsylvania Department of Health breaks down and visualizes 2010-2018 assault and self-harm data — including “by firearm” — as well as age, gender, race and county. During 2018, the state suffered 581 firearm homicides and 1,025 firearm suicides. Governor Wolf “encourages every Pennsylvanian to view the dashboard for information that can inform policies and initiatives in their own communities.” []

National emergency

• Homicides are up by double digits this year in 36 of America’s top 50 cities. [Wall Street Journal]

New research: Why do people have guns?

• Lack of safety was reported as a major driver of gun carrying among young people living with violence in New York City. []

• Boys in Maine were significantly more likely to bring guns to school if they were bullied based on their gender or sexual orientation. [Bangor Daily News]

• Religion shapes views on gun ownership in Kansas, “including concerns of Satan and Armageddon.” []

• Personal grievances were behind nearly one-third of the Mass Attacks in Public Places across the U.S. during 2019, according to a new report. [US Secret Service]

Solutions of the week

• Spending on violence prevention “pays for itself many times over, even if it’s only moderately effective — even if it’s expensive.” []

• Updating 911 systems can reduce the risk of police over-response, and might have saved Tamir Rice. [Vox]

Getting help in Philadelphia

• People affected by gun violence in Philadelphia can find resources online, compiled by Billy Penn.

• Safe gun storage prevents unintentional shootings and people in Philadelphia are invited to get a free gun lock from Temple Safety Net.