Study Finds Homicide Victims Tend To Be Criminals Too

Analysis Of Murder Data In Baltimore: 82% Of Victims Have Criminal Record, 81% Of Suspects Have Criminal Record, Average Victim Had 10.8 Arrests

Clearly neither the victims nor perpetrators of murders are “normal” people — both groups are overwhelmingly criminals. Sixty-five percent of murders occurred for unknown reasons, and there were only 86 suspects for these 348 murders. Fifty-nine percent of murders occurred on the street.

Homicides in Baltimore largely involve criminals killing criminals. 82% of Victims have criminal record. The average victim had 10.8 arrests, with 4.1 of those being drug offenses. Sixty-seven percent had an arrest record for drugs. Forty-four percent had an arrest record for gun crimes. Twenty-nine percent of victims were clearly known by the police to be members of “drug crews or gang” members. Obviously, some of those 18% who didn’t have an arrest record were probably also engaging in or suspected of criminal activity.

Unfortunately, the information on the suspects is much less complete than it is for victims as Baltimore solves relatively few murders through arrest. With only 31 percent of murders result in an arrest, the most difficult cases for the police to solve involve gangs. Thus the 81% of suspects having a criminal record should be viewed as a severe underestimate.