Annenberg Radio News

LAPD releases its 2022 homicide report

The LAPD finds a decrease in homicides in the past year

Photo of a sign in front of a building

Surrounded by several police department leaders, Los Angeles Police Chief Michael Moore presented key facts, figures, and updates from the 2022 End-of-Year Homicide Report at a Tuesday afternoon press conference in Downtown LA. He opened his remarks by acknowledging the importance of the report’s focus.

Michael Moore: We recognize that homicides devastate communities, it grips people with fear. It causes immeasurable damage to families, friends and loved ones.

Overall, the city saw a 5% decrease in homicides in 2022. The biggest decrease in homicides occurred in the areas south of the 10 Freeway, with 27 fewer homicides than in 2021. Guns are still the primary murder weapon in homicide cases by a large margin, and two hundred thirty two fewer guns were seized last year. However, the clearance rate, or the amount of crimes resolved with an arrest or being investigated to its fullest extent, increased to 75%, up from 68% in 2021.

One of the biggest announcements at the press conference was the launch of a new LAPD website dedicated to tracking homicides. It will not only list victims’ names and photos, but also tell people the date of the homicide, as well as whether any arrests were made in connection to it.

Moore: It’s our hope that as people see those victims [they] recognize that they represent a life not just lost, but a devastation for an entire family that will help drive our communities to help with the most crucial resource, and that is their voice, and helping us understand those responsible for this gun violence.

Despite the report’s good news, local residents have mixed feelings about LA safety, with one even expressing tiredness over the whole situation.

Shelly Fleming: I feel like walking around hasn’t felt like felt safe for a while. And just knowing that information makes it a little bit more scary.

Shelly Fleming, who lives in Downtown LA, said she witnessed a homeless person attack someone with a pole, and the initial post-pandemic rise made her uncomfortable to be out and about.

Fleming: It’s just disappointing because like, I live in Hollywood, and then I moved to downtown, so I’ve been in LA for seven years. So both places are kind of full of crime. And just it can get tiring having to be really cautious about the areas that you go to.

In contrast to Fleming, Hollywood Hills resident Richard Kaplan feels that things are a lot safer in Downtown LA.

Richard Kaplan: I’ve been working down here on and off for 30 years and it’s a lot safer than it’s ever been by far.” [1:05-1:10] “Am I aware of my surroundings? Sure. You’re aware of the people around you? Yes, but No, I don’t feel unsafe.

For Annenberg Media, I’m Lawrence Sung.