48 NYC shootings in a weekend: Trend or random tragedy?
"This is a national problem requiring national leadership," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
September 6th, 2011
01:41 PM ET

48 NYC shootings in a weekend: Trend or random tragedy?

It was a very bloody Labor Day weekend in New York. Forty-eight people were shot, including two law enforcement officers and a woman who was sitting with her daughter on a Brooklyn building stoop. The officers survived; three people have died.

The high number of shootings has captured headlines and led some to wonder whether there's some specific explanation for the violence.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg says there is, and he said Tuesday that lawmakers in the nation's capital ought to do something to better control gun violence. New York state reportedly had some of the strictest gun laws in the country, but Bloomberg wants Washington's help. He spoke outside a hospital where the officers were being treated.

"This is a national problem requiring national leadership," he said, according to the Los Angeles Times. "But at the moment, neither end of Pennsylvania Avenue has the courage to take basic steps that would save lives."

Jon M. Shane, an assistant professor at one of America's most highly regarded policing think tanks, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York, cautioned against drawing any conclusions from the numbers alone. Shane spent 20 years with the police department in Newark, New Jersey, which has consistently ranked as one of the most violent cities in the United States.

"I would caution against chalking this up to violence that is going to happen over any holiday weekend," Shane said, adding that thorough analysis of each Labor Day weekend shooting should be done to extrapolate concrete explanations that go beyond the particulars of each incident. One would need to research possible motives in each case and investigate suspects' backgrounds and their possible criminal affiliations. Previous crimes at the locations should be weighed from every angle.

In short, 48 shootings sounds like a lot, but drawing any large conclusions, or linking them to a larger trend, will take time.

The woman and the officers were shot Monday hours after the West Indian American Day Parade ended in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. According to the New York Post, two men were "slap boxing" before a shootout in which police became involved. In all, nine people in the area of the parade were shot.

Several people were shot in the Bronx on Sunday. Some of the wounded were children. Four people were shot Monday in Flatbush, Brooklyn, one teenager fatally.

The weekend's bloodshed put a fine point on figures the FBI released in May showing that violent crime was down throughout the country in the past year but up in New York. The New York Police Department released its own report in January, available in full here (PDF), which visually lays out all of the city's 536 homicides in 2010.

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Filed under: Crime • New York
soundoff (540 Responses)
  1. 1RingyDingy

    If violent crime is down everywhere but New York... why is this a "national problem" Mr. Mayor ? So much for having the strictest gun laws in the country – didn't slow the criminals down one bit.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • U.S.Army-OverLord

      Exactly!!! Like some drug dealing gangsta is gonna say "Hey Loc you got that kilo of coke, oh hold up player I've got to go register for my gun permit" LOL 😉

      September 6, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  2. JW

    sounds like more people need guns . . . not.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Matt Damon

    Oh Ni&&ers, you are so craaayyzzeee!

    September 6, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Chuck

    Mayor Bloomberg bought the mayoral seat with his billions of dollars. He must be a very bright man and from where I stand, he needs to step up and lead, not call on Washington to solve his city's problem. I just can't imagine Rudy saying that Washington needs to come to the rescue! LEAD MAYOR BLOOMBERG!!

    September 6, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • arthurrrr

      Since Mayor Gloomburg has forbidden praying at the WTC memorial service this year, this means he does not believe in God. Therefore, he has no access to any of God's Wisdom, as if there was another kind. Therefore he is clueless as to what to do about anything.

      September 6, 2011 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      The people that use guns to break the law don't obey the law anyway. So passing more gun control only adds more fear to those that have the fear already. Completely disarm the honest citizen and the criminals will have a field day

      September 6, 2011 at 8:57 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Edwin

    A normal weekend in Puerto Rico.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  6. charlesnspirit

    COME UP WITH A REALISTIC PLAN TO END POVERTY IN AMERICAN AND CRIME WILL ALMOST BE NON-EXISTENT. AS LONG AS POLICE, LAWYERS, JUDGES AND PRISONS PROFIT FROM POOR PEOPLE BEING UNCIVIL THE POWERS THAT BE ARE NOT GOING TO SOLVE THE POVERTY ISSUE.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Michael

    Ah the good old "gun control" routine. Yet every piece of statistical data ever recorded shows anywhere gun control is put into place, crime goes up because criminals know they are targeting unarmed citizens. This article proves that, it even states we have some of the "toughest" gun control laws, yet we have 48 shootings in just one weekend. Arm the citizens, don't make them easy targets you morons!

    September 6, 2011 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • hockeyguy

      you're an idiot. i did a research paper on this in high school. HIGH SCHOOL! and you know what? all the data i found pointed to lower crime rates in places with tight gun control laws. show me your "data" and i'll be impressed. otherwise i'm pretty sure you're talking out your @ss

      September 6, 2011 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • RAM05

      Most gun owners are idiots.
      Lets send them all to one state, put up a high steel-enforced wall and let them all play together.

      September 6, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • RealityCheck

      We already have plenty of gun laws in this country. We do not need more gun laws. What we DO need is to have the existing gun laws ENFORCED. But, here's the catch (and there's always a catch): enforcing the gun laws costs big bucks. Why big bucks? Because ENFORCEMENT means more police officers, more courts, more jails, more prisons, more personnel to staff the jails and prisons, and the list goes on. I would like very much to have the existing gun laws enforced. And I am willing to contribute my share of the cost for this. Yes, that means more tax dollars for this. We need to stop whining about more gun laws and ante-up for the cost to enforce the ones we already have. Passing laws is cheap; enforcing them is costly. If we truly want gun-related crime to be dealt with effectively, then let's be committed (with both our words and our pocket books) to the course that will bring us success in this.

      September 6, 2011 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bran

    The Mayor is one of the biggest anti-gun nuts in the country, not to mention NYC has one of the most repressive anti-gun laws in the country. Now the question is Why can't the mayor use the Sullivan gun law to clean up his city?? Or is it that only the bad guys and cops have guns? It seems strange that liberal gun laws result in fewer killings. Riddle me that

    September 6, 2011 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  9. James

    I would like Bloomberg to explain how more gun control is going to affect the behavior of criminals. More gun control won't solve this problem when criminals don't care about what laws exist in the first place.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Answer

    I'd really like to see a gun's usefulness without a bullet. 🙂

    Think you could be looking at this too blindly?

    September 6, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  11. cee

    The only way to stop it is to go after the manufacturer who saturate the market with handguns.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  12. GaBoy

    Read the NYPD Murder Report linked in the article. I think that should answer most of your questions. If you are white, you should have a pretty good chance of not getting killed in NYC.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
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    September 6, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. ZomgWhoCares

    **84% had prior arrests** Too bad that number couldn't be limited to 100%.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Henry Miller

    "Mayor Michael Bloomberg says there is, and he said Tuesday that lawmakers in the nation's capital ought to do something to better control gun violence."

    Bloomberg needs to quit trying to make the rest of the country solve the problems of his pig-sty of a city. If New Yorkers insist on shooting each other, it's not my problem.

    September 6, 2011 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
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