Shootings spike during May in Philadelphia; still behind last year’s pace

At the Gun Crisis Reporting Project, we tracked 111 gunshot victims wounded during 100 shooting incidents reported last month in Philadelphia, based on original reporting, media reports, police officials and other sources.

May’s total number of people wounded or killed represents a 26 percent increase over the previous month, when we counted 88 people shot, and a 79 percent leap from the 62 victims we reported in both February and March.

However, last month’s total also represented a seven percent decrease in shooting victims in comparison with May, 2013 — when 119 people were shot — and a 20 percent improvement over May 2012 – when 138 shooting victims were reported, according to Philadelphia Police data. Monthly shooting victim reports spiked during May in each of those years as well.

So far this year, 99 homicides have been reported in Philadelphia, down from 104 on the same date last year, according to the latest daily update from the Philadelphia Police, and representing a five percent improvement.

Last month, 16 shooting victims were pronounced dead on the same day they were shot and another 24 were initially reported in critical condition.

Victims included seven women and a 16-year-old girl. One woman was killed in a murder-suicide and two more women were critically wounded in separate incidents. Overall, 12 victims were under the age of 18, including a 12-year-old boy who was shot in the leg on May 3rd.

Slide show: Philadelphia shooting scenes from May, 2014

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Neighbors pause, gather, or sometimes make their way past crime scenes where people were shot last month in Philadelphia. Photographs for the Gun Crisis Reporting Project by Joseph Kaczmarek.

Two days passed with no gunshot victims reported — on the 4th and the 11th — but the daily total climbed twice into double digits — with 10 shooting victims reported on May 2nd, and 12 people shot on May 13th.

Ten multiple-victim incidents were reported during May: Two people were shot in each of nine separate incidents, three of which took place on May 13th alone. One triple-shooting left two men dead and one critically wounded on May 2nd.

*Our report for May includes two police-involved shootings but excludes intentional self-inflicted shootings as well as sudden deaths and found bodies with no apparent cause of death.

Posted by Jim MacMillan.

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