Why does Chicago have more homicides than NYC?

Jun 6, 2014

A crime researcher in Chicago says New York city spends a lot more money on city services, and that might be one reason why they have so few homicides compared to Chicago.

Even though New York is three times as large as Chicago, they actually have fewer murders each year. It leads to the question that came up at a luncheon on Chicago violence Thursday: What are they doing differently?

That’s a complicated question but University of Chicago crime lab researcher Jens Ludwig says New York spends a lot more per capita on city services than Chicago and Cook County combined. That includes spending on schools, social programs and policing.

"What would it take to get the Chicago violence problem to look like New Yorks? We’d either have to figure out a way to generate more money, or we’d have to figure out a way to be unbelievably smart to spend the money that we actually have."

Ludwig says New York City is able to tax Wall street profits and he says they also tax the incomes of people who work in the city but live elsewhere.