|(December 2, 2019) -- Long Beach isn't Chicago but from November 1 through Dec. 1, 2019, LB's 1st plus 6th Council districts combined had nearly as many shootings (persons wounded + fatal) per capita as Chicago.
During this time period, three of LB's nine Council districts (2, 3 and 5) had no shootings. Dists.4. 7, 8 and 9 had one shooting each in additon to a shooting on the 8th/9th dist. border (along South St.) The 8th and 9th dist. shootings had no persons hit; the 8th/9th dist. border shooting left a man wounded. Dist. 1 also had a no-person hit shooting (which we chose to exclude from our per capita computation.)
Central LB Council districts 1 and 6 stretch from a few blocks north of downtown Long Beach's gleaming new Civic Center to working class neighborhoods in from Central to West Long Beach including Cambodia Town.
Here's the math which uses rounded figures (sufficient to illustrate relative proportions.)
Chicago's population is roughly 2.7 million. LB's 1st and 6th Council districts have roughly 50,000 residents each/roughly 100,000 residents combined. Chicago's population is roughly 27 times the size of LB's 1st plus 6th Council districts combined (100,000 x 27 = 2.7 million.)
In November 2019, Chicago had 188 people shot (160 shot/wounded plus 28 shot/killed. Source: Chicago's independent HeyJackass.com website.)
From November 1 through Dec. 1, 2019, Long Beach Council districts 1 + 6 had six shootings (one of which was a 1st dist. homicide, 1500 block Henderson.) Our calculation excludes a 1st dist. shooting in which LBPD found casings but no persons appear to have been hit (Chestnut just north of 14th St. Park.) From Nov. 1 through Dec. 1, LB's 1st + 6th Council districts combined had 6 persons hit (incl. a homicide). 6 x 27 = 162. This figure approaches Chicago's November shooting number of 188.
(Chicago's shootings are concentrated in two areas which doesn't undermine the basic inequity visible in LB's numbers. If LB's 1st and 6th districts combined were its own city, its rate of shootings for November would approach per capita Chicago's citywide rate.
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In recent months, LB Mayor Robert Garcia has told audiences that LB crime is at "record lows" and "down" from previous years. The Mayor's metric avoids acknowledging a major inequity: even if shootings citywide are "down" or at "record lows," they continue to disproportionately impact mainly working class/historically disadvantaged LB neighborhoods; their residents and businesses experience shootings crimes at a rate nearly inconceivable to residents/businesses in other parts of LB. LBREPORT.com has editorially called this LB's worst inequity, a chronic injustice we've described as a "tale of two cities."
The maps below show cumulated fatal, non-fatal and no-person hit shootings. The top map shows shootings cumulated from Jan. 1, 2018 to Dec, 1 (with arrows showing the two Dec. 1 shootings) For context, the second map shows shootings cumulated from Jan. 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2017.
On Dec. 3, Mary Zendejas will begin casting votes as the 1st district's newly elected Council representative. She was elected on November 5 with fewer than 900 total votes in a multi-candidate no-runoff special election during which neither she nor other candidates made crime and shootings a major issue. Under the previous incumbent and with Mayor Garcia's support, the City Council has failed to restore 186 police officers (including LBPD's former field anti-gang unit) that LB had but no longer has despite collecting roughly $60 million more in General fund ("blank check") revenue annually from the Measure A sales tax. Ms. Zendejas received financial support from and had the endorsement of the LB Police Officers Association (union) PAC.
In March 2020, voters in LB's 6th Council district will decide whether to re-elect their incumbent Councilman/Vice Mayor Dee Andrews (first elected 2007) who faces several declared challengers. The LB Police Officers Ass'n PAC has also endorsed Andrews for re-election. If no candidate receives 50%+1 of the votes in March, the top two proceed to a November 2020 runoff.
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