Murders are on the rise in Philadelphia. The city’s homicide tally reached 324 on Wednesday–more than last year’s 306 murders and the 302 homicides in 2009.
Though homicides have fallen about 17 percent since Mayor Michael Nutter took office four years ago, Philadelphia still has the highest murder rate among the nation’s 10 largest cities. Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said, obviously, that’s not good.”We’ve got to continue to work to get that down and we’d have to get down around a 230 mark in order to get down below where Chicago is right now at about 15 … per 100,000,” Ramsey said. “We’ve got a lot of work to do, but this is a city that’s got a history of violence unfortunately.”While police will keep working to cut crime, Ramsey said that, without the public’s help, it’s often difficult to build cases.Crime numbers this year were a mixed bag. While shootings fell more than 3 percent, the police department’s clearance rate for solving murders dropped as well.