(City Journal) — The Black Lives Matter crusade against the police continued to cost lives and destroy civil peace in 2016. Two recent estimates of violent crime in the nation’s largest cities show that murders and shootings remained on an upward trajectory this year, as officers backed off of proactive policing. The Brennan Center for Justice projects that murders in the 30 largest cities will be 14 percent higher in 2016 compared with 2015, a stunning increase coming as it does on top of 2015’s already massive homicide rise, which was 14.5 percent in all cities with populations over 250,000 and 20 percent in cities with populations from 500,000 to 1 million. The Wall Street Journal found that homicides increased in 16 of the 20 largest police departments in 2016. Meanwhile, gun murders of police officers are up 68 percent through December 23, compared with the same period in 2015.
Medium-sized cities that don’t show up in the Brennan Center or Wall Street Journal analyses are also in distress. Cleveland’s murder numbers, for example, are up again in 2016 over 2015, which, with a 15 percent spike over 2014, was already one of the deadliest years in a decade. By early December 2016, Richmond had logged a 40 percent increase in homicides over 2015, making this year Richmond’s deadliest in a decade.