Crime Rate in New York City

The issue of crime in any major city is not an amusing or surprising story since this is one of the great effects of urbanization. This crime aspect is brought about by the influence of poverty and overcrowding. When people overcrowd in the urban areas they end up in poor conditions in terms of sanitation, infrastructure and development hence are pushed into crime. All this is a result of unemployment. The City of New York is the world’s most leading city reported by Edwin G. Burrows & Mike Wallance (pp 22). It has great attributes in business, culture and entertainment.

New York is seen as an important city in USA because the UN Headquarters located here. With a high population of about 8,274,527 people in the city and about 19,750,000 people in the metropolis, New York covers an area of 305square miles (790km2) and 6,720square miles (17,400 km2) respectively (Roberts 6). In this great city the story of crime dates back to the 19th century (particularly organized crimes), several major shocking disturbances have transpired in the City. There are different forms of crimes reported in this city.

The categories of crime could be grouped as riots, Tammany hall, homicide and organized crimes. In the 1800 years crime rate was extremely high with no security at all. Passing by the streets was extremely dangerous and the city could not be referred by the present term as “The City that Never Sleeps”(this terms refers to the activities and the busy sub way system that works over the day and the night in New York). In those years organized gangs were most known and they terrorized the citizens and the visitors in the city causing an atmosphere of fear.

At this time, groups like the forty thieves and the roach guards were feared even to the mention of their names. The forty thieves mainly operated at the five point areas and later established the Tammany hall where they offered community services to the people in exchange for money. The Irish street gang (the roach guards) on the other hand operated from the same point but were initially on a mission to taking care and offering protection to the New York liquor merchants. They later turned to robbery and worse still, to murder.

During these the New York militias who had previously helped the police were less effective and it led to an outbreak of several riots like the 1863 Draft riot, 1870 Orange riot and the 1874 Tompkins Square riots. The other form of crime addressed in this paper is the Tammany hall. This was in form of politics where it acted as the Democratic Party machine in control of the nominations, patronage and even the elections. This later turned to be a dirty job in terms of corruption, government contract jobs as well as doing the community chores that the government was to offer free for some set charges.

In the 20th century there was a decrease of crime forms and operations with the in coming of the New York City Police Department. Some gangs were up to the rise but not as powerful as those in the previous century. Such gangs included: the Mafias controlled by the five families, the black spades, Bloods, Crips and Mara Salvatrucha. The last three were mainly from Los Angeles with the later having operations at the Rikers Island. In 1990, New York City was dubbed as the murder capital of the United States in view of the fact that its homicide rate during that year reached a record breaking high of 2,245.

Nevertheless, from that time, the crime rate has dropped dramatically to levels not observed since the 1960s, even more than in the United States all together. As compared to approximately 28 percent decline of violent crime in the entire United States, the New York’s crime rate dropped by over 56 percent. In addition, the City’s property crimes dropped by roughly 65 percent, as compared to only 26 percent decrease nationwide. Development of the City’s Crime Rate In 2005, the homicide rate in New York dropped to 539 from 570 recorded homicides in 2004 (“New York City’s murder rate may be lowest in 40 years”).

Among the 10 major cities in the country, New York City has the lowest rate of crime during the year. The majority of deaths during the year were caused by disputes with family, spouses, rival drug crew members or acquaintances. Last 2007, the city is on track to have fewer than 500 murders, which was the lowest total in a 12-month period in more than 40 years. There were 427 murders recorded, which came from the year’s 411 killings and 16 crime victims who died from injuries acquired from the previous years. Violent crimes in New York City decline by five percent during the first half of 2007, from 25,132 down to 23,887.

In addition, according to reports, the city had a 4 percent decrease in property crimes during the same period (“New York City’s murder rate may be lowest in 40 years”). New York’s crime reduction is attributed to some improved measures in the Administration, the legislature and the judiciary. The implementations of the “get-tough” policies accomplished by the administration of former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani were credited for this improvement. His policies did not incorporate the tolerance of minor crimes as he considered them to be the key seed that germinated to bigger and more fatal crimes.

There are several strategies that he deployed to the police as the guide to the operations against crime. The first one is the “comp stat”. This is a management philosophy in police departments that has a dynamic approach to crime reduction by use of geographic information plans. It seeks to attend to the needs and issues of the community. The second strategy was the use of the “broken window” approach to law enforcement, which was the uncompromising policing of lower-level crimes (David). This theory adopts the Phrase “Zero tolerance and quality of life”.

Although some experts believe that the “broken window” approach does not put off crime as much as the number of supporters argues, yet they concur that it does have an effect, generally on motor vehicle theft and robbery. The last strategy was the “carrot sticks” which taught people to remain in the straight and narrow path out of crime and therefore stands for a drop in crime in the society. Aside from the get-tough policies, several factors were identified that have contributed to the New York’s crime rates decline during the 1990s.

During the aforesaid period, the city’s prison inmates’ population increased by 24 percent, law enforcement in New York City increased by 35 percent, and several other demographic variations, including the city’s dwindling number of youths (David). Further, some experts consider that to some extent, it was the 1990 economic outburst that encouraged the public to remain on the right side of law that consequently brought the reduction in New York City’s crime rates. Conclusion New York City’s crime rate has been a concern of its population since the 19th century.

However, throughout the 1990s, efforts have been made by the local government to avert and reduce the prevalence of the said problem. The impressive dive in crime has been attributed to the policing campaigns, demographic changes, and the economic improvement during period. Since 1991, the city has witnessed an uninterrupted 17-year development of crime reductions. Neighborhoods that were previously regarded as dangerous are currently safer compared to other cities. All these summed up to the present condition of the New York City where both the citizens and the visitors can enjoy and live harmoniously.

Works Cited David, Francis, R. “What Reduced Crime in New York City. ” n. d. National Bureau of Economic Research. 8 December 2008 <http://www. nber. org/digest/jan03/w9061. html >. Edwin G. Burrows and Mike Wallance. Gotham: A history of New York City to 1898. Oxford University press. New York. (1998) pp 22- 48 “New York City’s murder rate may be lowest in 40 years. ” 24 November 2007. CNN online. 8 December 2008 <http://www. cnn. com/2007/US/11/23/newyork. homicide. ap/ >. Roberts, Sam. It is still a big city: Just not quite so big. The New York Times (May 22, 2008). pp 5-10