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Are Homicides Really Up In Dallas?

Dallas Police Department

An unsettling statistic has come to light — 40 homicides in the city of Dallas in May. But here's why context is needed. 

Overall, crime is still down historically since the 1990s. And we're not even halfway through 2019 yet. 

Ames Grawert is with the Brennan Center for Justice, which analyzes crime data. Their December 2018 preliminary analysis of crime in the nation's 30 largest cities show a continued, "historic downward trend."

"Dallas is emblematic of that trend," Grawert said, noting that Dallas' homicide rate is around 12.5 per 100,000 people. 

One month of data can also prove to be an outlier.

University of Texas at Dallas criminologist Alex Piquero said relative to other similarly-sized cities, Dallas is a relatively safe place. 

"From a policy perspective, we don't need to panic. We don't want to get people in a panic," Piquero said. 

Anthony Cave reports gun culture as part of a new national reporting collaborative called Guns & America.