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. Lewis

    The world is coming apart and this kind of criminal behavoir is going on in our citys,what is that saying about our country what sin !!!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Stefan

    Your angry judgement reminds me of someone. Oh, right, the Taliban. I'm pretty sure burning "that cesspool" to the ground was their exact idea.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • katie w

      Wow whose angry judgement? You sound like a Taliban supporter to me.

      September 6, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • docserveralson

      No need for the Taliban or anyone else to "burn it down." It, like many other US cities are destroying themselves. Guess why? Diversity is our strength!

      September 6, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • rahul

      and your solution to this problem would be to what - cut down on 'diversity?' Exactly how would you do that?

      September 6, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • tensor

      *judgment,* unless one is in Britain.

      September 6, 2011 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  3. dont be a sucker

    In Other News:

    Right next door in Vermont, they VERY few gun laws ( I believe if your under 18, you have to have a note from your parents to buy a rifle...I'm Kidding-–But not by much)...And last year had 3 cities voted in the top 10 best places to raise a family in the country.

    Stick that in your juice box and suck on it a while

    September 6, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • dont be a sucker

      ...they 'have' very few....(brains faster than the fingers today) :frown:

      September 6, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ben

      DBAS, I agree BUT there's just a SLIGHT difference in 'composition' between CessPool City and Vermont..........

      September 6, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • grammarsnob

      grammar...who needs it.

      September 6, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • dont be a sucker

      Ben

      -I guarantee that if every 18 y/o+ magically woke up 1 morning in NYC with ownership of a gun and knew how to use it
      -Knew that everyone else also had a gun
      -Knew that everyone else knew how to use the gun
      -Knew that no one would be prosecuted for lawful use of that gun for protection

      The 'cesspool' as you call it would Clean Up its act-REAL QUICK

      September 6, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ronald Hussein Reagan

      or if you want to be really safe you can go to Canada where they don't worship guns and bullets.

      September 6, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • dont be a sucker

      grammarsnob

      :yawn:

      :crickets:

      September 6, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • dont be a sucker

      Ronald Hussein Regan

      Because they don't have rifles and ammo in Canada ?...Oh wait....They do

      It's not about the gun...it's about the Liberty

      tool

      September 6, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Chris HOnry

    So, the gun control laws they already have, which are a "normal" citizen cannot even own a handgun or AR-type rifle in the city aren't enough? Oh, gee, let me think for a minute (something these knew-jerk liberal mayors don't do) could it be because CRIMINALS DON"T FOLLOW GUN LAWS! THEY RELY ON CITIZENS TO DO SO, SO THEY MAY EASILY BE ROBBED!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • slojoe

      I agree just think if n.y.c was like Texas .. Gun control only arms the crimminals!

      September 6, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Pastor Evans

    NYC as a whole is under judgement by God!!! Your Mayor is a major manifestation of the demonic influences over NYC. I (A Kingdom Man) am praying for you all, but you all need to come together like never before and root out these principalities, powers, and ruling forces (spirits) of darkness in your city!! USE and TAKE YOUR AUTHORITY!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Midiman

      Even more snake oil.

      September 6, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Debbie

    Chris – since you have never been to NYC, you should refrain from commenting as if you have. It is definitely not a cesspool of filth.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  7. bhibsen

    Perhaps you are right that more gun laws are not the answer, however, allowing the gun laws we have in place did not do a whole lot of good either. Honestly, I don't know the answer to this one. I do know that arming all of our citizenry is not a recipe for a more lawful society. We used to allow everyone to carry arms and it resulted in such violence that we enacted laws to prevent this. Doesn't anyone remember that Alexander Hamilton was killed in a gun duel by a political rival over an insult to his integrity? Is that the kind of society you propose when you say that the solution is that we should all carry weapons?

    September 6, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • dont be a sucker

      I'd rather have 2 guys stand off and settle the score between them...than have the tension mount to a point where people blow a gasket and kill a bunch of innocents..Kinda just like the guy in Las Vegas did this afternoon

      September 6, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Joe

    Its Obama'a fault

    September 6, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  9. NoodleHat

    I think you're thinking of NJ, not NYC. NJ is truly a cesspool.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  10. shannon bednars

    There is always more gun violence in area that have strict gun control. Do you think criminals care about gun control. If criminals know there targets have no weapons, who is going to stop them. Police officers are only there to do the paperwork after the fact.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fatsicle

      That is not necessarily indicative of anything. Oftentimes, gun control laws are enacted in areas that have already had large amounts of gun violence. The laws are an attempted counter-measure after such violence was already known to have existed. This is very common in large, densely populated urban areas(like NYC), where there is far more likelihood of people coming into conflict due to the proximity, a presence of economic/social tensions, etc.

      I'm not advocating for the law's effectiveness or not as I haven't seen enough objective evidence, but you certainly can't draw any conclusions from your evidence alone. At the very least you'd need to look at differences in the rates of gun violence before and after such laws were enacted in the area in question, external factors not related to the laws that could have affected gun violence rate, and other things.

      September 6, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  11. beernpizzalover

    48 shootings. And yet people still want to believe that the guns do it by themselves. Unbelievable!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Blue Templar

      But NYC has all these magical gun control laws.. and look! Oh right laws only affect law-abiding citizens. People like you want to keep insisting that guns must be banned and look at the result. Citizens unable to defend themselves. Unbelievable!!

      September 6, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Ben

    Agree 100%............a literal cesspool of DIEversity................

    September 6, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  13. WOW

    Wow chris... congrats for the stupidest most ignorant comment yet.... your parents must be proud....

    September 6, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Karen L. Reimer

    Bloomberg is incompetent and needs to step down. More gun control laws will only make the problem worse because all the criminals will have guns and no law abiding citizens will be able to defend themselves. HELLO?

    September 6, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  15. St Genesius

    What a ridiculous thing to say. New York, like all mega-cities, has good points and lousy ones. Unlike you, which seem to be pretty much all lousy.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rommel

      SURE!!! Name the Good points!!! LOL- you morons pay the HIGHEST taxes- 63%, in the world, 48 INNOCENT people shot on a wk-end, $5000 per month for a walk-up, and you think that is GREAT??? SAD

      September 6, 2011 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
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