KILLADELPHIA: 18,043 People Shot Since 2001 In The 215

  PHILLY MAG: Between January 1, 2001, and May 29th of this year, 18,043 people were shot in Philadelphia. That equates to about one shooting every six hours. In that same time period, there were 3,852 murders—a new body yielded up for disposal nearly every day. The entire length of the conflict in Afghanistan hasn’t produced as many dead Americans as we’ve picked up off our city’s streets. Unfortunately, political debate over urban violence reduces to opposites: On the left, politicians blame economic factors, bad schools and ineffective, even racist law enforcement; to the right, conservatives preach personal responsibility, citing […]

KILLADELPHIA: ‘Stop Snitching’ Killed Officer Moses Walker Jr.

INQUIRER: The night of Feb. 12, six months before he allegedly gunned down Police Officer Moses Walker Jr., Rafael Jones was arrested and charged with sticking a handgun into the chest of a man walking to a Germantown bus stop and stealing his designer jacket, Nike sneakers, and $65. The victim, identified in court papers as E.J., 26, ran barefoot two blocks to his girlfriend’s apartment to call police, who quickly arrested Jones, still on probation for a previous gun offense. In the months that followed, E.J. made a fateful decision. He failed to testify. Despite extensive efforts by prosecutors […]

GUNCRAZY: Where Pennsyltucky Meets Killadelphia

Photo by JOE KAZCMAREK DEENEY: The black market for guns itself remains mercurial, shifting and changing and hard for researchers to accurately quantify. It’s amazing how little we know at this late stage about the illegal gun market in America.  Johns Hopkins’ Webster says that straw purchasers—legal buyers who then turn the guns over to drug dealers or stick-up artists (a federal felony)—play a role. Yet drug dealers in Baltimore (as elsewhere in the US) can also go to gun shows in nearby Virginia to take advantage of the circuit’s freewheeling, unregulated cash-and-carry policies, but according to Webster, the extent […]

GUNCRAZY: It’s Always Gunny In Killadelphia

Photo by GTXTOM INQUIRER: The day started out stellar but was marred by three shootings, one by police, about 9:20 p.m. blocks from the celebration. Police grazed a 16-year-old male in the chest after he wounded at least one person, possibly two, then aimed his gun at officers near 17th and JFK Boulevard, police said. Authorities believe that the teenager had fired on a 17-year-old male and struck him in the leg. They believe the alleged shooter next shot a 19-year-old man in the left leg. “The officer saw him shoot the other person, and he ordered him to drop […]

KILLADELPHIA: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Sparks Street, Olney, Monday night, by JOE KACZMAREK DAILY NEWS: IN A CITY where justice frequently is thwarted by a no-snitching culture, Rodney Ramseur did what others are too scared or too heartless to do: He spoke up and told what he allegedly saw, fingering a former friend at a court hearing last week as the gunman who shot a neighbor in 2010. But Monday night, someone gunned down Ramseur and his girlfriend as they sat in a springtime drizzle on the porch of his Olney home. Now, police are probing whether a retaliation-minded murderer targeted Ramseur for his role […]

KILLADELPHIA: Same As It Ever Was

DAILY BEAST: Thirty-two murders that have taken place in Philadelphia since the start of 2012. This recent rash of homicides comes quickly on the heels of a year when Mayor Michael Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey were touting a steep reduction in violent crime, with homicides down 22 percent, robberies down 23 percent, and overall violent crime down 16 percent in 2011 from their 2007 highs.  The Mayor blames the homicide spike on a steady flow of illegal handguns into the city as groups like the NRA stymie his attempts to pass local gun-control laws. Richard Berk, a statistician […]

KILLADELPHIA: Brutes Bash Temple Grad’s Brains Out On The Steps Of The Second Bank Of America

INQUIRER: Just before 2:25 a.m. Saturday, Kless and two female friends were walking on Chestnut Street near Fourth Street when he tried to hail a cab. The bars had just let out, and the three had just left Lucy’s Hat Shop Restaurant & Lounge a few blocks away. The cab’s rooftop lights were on, signaling it was available, but there were passengers inside, and the taxi didn’t stop. Police said Kless yelled, “Turn off your f-ing lights. A maroon Mazda with four men inside drove up behind the cab as traffic likely slowed briefly. The people in the Mazda may […]

KILLADELPHIA: Is The Police Department Cooking The Books On The City’s Annual Murder Rate?

[Photo via multi.lectical.net] GOP mayoral candidate Karen Brown made a startling accusation today on Radio Times, claiming the murder rate is in fact much higher than the figures cited by Mayor Nutter. Seizing on Nutter’s remarks during his inauguration that if he did not reduce the murder rate by at least 30% he should not be re-elected (in fact, he did call for a reduction of the murder rate by 30% to 50% in the next three to five years, but never said he shouldn’t be re-elected if he doesn’t) Brown claims that the Philadelphia Police Department has been using […]

KILLADELPHIA: It’s Always Gunny In Philadelphia

DAILY NEWS: Pennsylvania residents who are denied a license to carry a concealed weapon, or have theirs revoked, have found a loophole that allows them to get a license from another state that must be honored here. “They could be disapproved here and they could apply in Florida and we are not notified,” said Philadelphia Police Lt. Lisa King, commander of the Gun Permit Unit. “So if we are not giving them a permit to carry, how is Florida allowed to override our decision?” District Attorney Seth Williams said that the loophole defeats local efforts to keep streets safe. Police […]

KILLADELPHIA: Dead Men Tell No Tales

INQUIRER: Martin Thomas looked at the flier and blanched. “Don’t stand next to this man. You might get shot.” The threat was scribbled on a copy of his signed statement to police, implicating a man in a murder. Thomas, then 20, had revealed a buried cache of weapons and named one of the gunmen who killed a man at 22d and Somerset on a summer night. Now, there were his words to detectives, posted on the wall of a Chinese restaurant in North Philadelphia for all to see. Panicked, Thomas fled, flagged down a police car, and told the officers […]

KILLADELPHIA: The Hits Just Keep Comin’

DAILY NEWS: Episodes of violence in the city this weekend struck people at their homes, their jobs and even within their own families. On Friday alone, a man killed his mother with his bare hands, two home invasions resulted in slayings and a feud between two barbers ended with fatal gunfire, according to police. In separate incidents on Saturday, two babies, neither of whom was a full year into life, were taken to area hospitals with serious and suspicious injuries. One of the children did not survive, police said. In that case, the father, whose name was not released, is […]

KILLADELPHIA: The Guns And The Damage Done

EDITOR’S NOTE: In today’s edition of the Daily News, Dana DiFilippo takes an in-depth look at the shadowy world of illegal gun-trading, how weapons get in the hands of the young and the reckless and the damage done. One of the names that figures in the story is Nazir Gary, aka ‘Nazzy’, who was gunned down in 2007 and subsequently became one of the subjects of Jeff Deeney’s VALLEY OF THE SHADOW series on Phawker. The following is an excerpt from DiFilippo’s must-read story and the installment of VOS that ran back in 2007. DAILY NEWS: In the life of […]

KILLADELPHIA: Murder Rate Drops 30%

DAILY NEWS: The city’s homicide rate has fallen 30 percent from the grim total it had registered by this point in 2007, when the constant deluge of murders led to the loathsome local nickname “Killadelphia.” According to police statistics, 162 homicides have been recorded so far this year, compared with 183 a year ago, and 234 in 2007. The city had 333 homicides all of last year, a 15 percent drop from the 392 slayings in ’07. The homicide rate — which soared at a time earlier this decade when homicides in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles were reaching […]