Thousands shot to death in Philadelphia since September 11th

With deepest respect to the thousands of people killed on September 11th, we have calculated that more people have since been shot to death in Philadelphia alone.

But where’s the response?

In the years following 9/11, the US military has occupied two nations and has been engaged in the longest war in American history, still underway in Afghanistan.

The Cabinet-level Department of Homeland Security was formed, expressing that: “Our duties are wide-ranging, but our goal is clear – keeping America safe.”

And the National September 11 Memorial now occupies the former site of the World Trade Center.

Where’s the response to the lives lost in Philadelphia?

While Philadelphia did experience an historic 25 percent year-to-year reduction in homicides by the end of 2013, many other large American cities were making great progress as well. And Philadelphia’s rate of 15.96 homicides per 100,000 residents in 2013 remained slightly higher than Chicago’s rate and four times higher than New York City.


Our post-9/11 calculations are based on results from two sources:

A homicide map published at indicates 3,172 people were shot to death in the city, found when you search dates between September 11th, 2001 and December 31st, 2012, and for “Firearm” as the weapon. Another 201 people were shot to death during 2013, based on Philadelphia Police data.

This morning, the Philadelphia Police Crime Maps and Stats page indicates that 174 people have been murdered in the city so far during 2014. While the site does not explain how many were shot to death, we know from previous police data that more than 80 percent of last year’s Philadelphia homicide victims were killed with guns.

Posted by Jim MacMillan.

At top of page: Photograph of September 11 Memorial by Jim MacMillan, 2013.


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The Gun Crisis Reporting Project is an award-winning, independent, nonprofit journalism community striving to illuminate the epidemic of homicide by gunfire in Philadelphia — and to find solutions.

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