What To Know Today
“That’s their job to protect me, too”: Gun violence survivors on police and guns in their communities. Survivors of gun violence are far more likely to be injured in a subsequent shooting and slightly more likely to be arrested on a violence or gun-related charge. With that context, a team of policy experts and criminal justice practitioners affiliated with Yale University looked at the post-hospitalization recoveries of 20 Black men aged 20 to 51 to reach a qualitative picture on survivors, guns, and the police. Their takeaway: “Survivors of gun violence describe distrust for the police and an ecology of guns that confers symbolic, social, and strategic meaning to owning a gun,” the researchers write. “Interventions to decrease gun violence should address the cultural value of a gun as well as focus on improving police relations with the community.” The qualitative study was published in the journal of Social Science & Medicine.
More evidence that bipartisan majorities support community violence intervention. Polling from Safer Cities, a progressive nonprofit focusing on public safety, found that a bipartisan majority of voters in California (73 percent) and Louisiana (69 percent) supported their local officials using funds from the American Rescue Plan for community-focused violence prevention. Bipartisan majorities in California (77 percent) and Louisiana (76 percent) also favored the creation of independent offices of community violence prevention to work in parallel with the police to mediate street disputes and prevent shootings. In both states, voters also prioritized community violence intervention over hiring more armed police officers; there wasn’t bipartisan majority support in either state, however, and the undecided rates were relatively high (14 percent in California and 9 percent in Louisiana). Overall, the findings echo a recent nationwide survey conducted by Safer Cities.
Putting longtime officers in areas with elevated crime can reduce violence. That’s the connection made in a working paper from five researchers looking how the seniority of police officers in Chicago helps determine where they’re assigned. Currently, officers with more years get priority choices on assignments, which has led to more experienced officers working in lower-crime, higher-income neighborhoods. “Equalizing officer seniority across districts would reduce violent crime rate by 4.6 percent and significantly decrease inequality in crime, discretionary arrests, and officer use of force across neighborhoods,” the researchers write. They also note that doing so would likely benefit officers without costing departments any extra money. The paper, which has not been peer reviewed, was submitted for review with the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Esports gaming center offers respite for kids in West Philly neighborhood where violence is commonplace. It’s the first-of-its-kind gaming space installed by the city’s parks and recreation department, and community leaders hope to create more. The facility was built in an unused room in an existing youth rec center, where the facility’s director noted that several kids who had used the space had died from gun violence just this summer. Leaders hope the renovation is a chance to draw even more kids to a safe space. “We lost three friends of ours and it’s a devastating loss to us and it brings our community down,” 12-year-old Matthew Douglass told local ABC 6. “But we’ll cherish the moment and live up to them.”
Judge “extremely troubled and disturbed” by Remington request for records of Sandy Hook victims. Earlier this month, the bankrupt gunmaker — whose Bushmaster AR-15 was used to kill 26 people in the 2012 shooting — sought the school records of five children and four teachers killed. The request was part of the yearslong legal case that nine families brought against the company for deceptive marketing of that weapon. Last week, the Connecticut judge overseeing the case chided Remington for improperly issuing the subpoenas: “If you issue a subpoena, you must — for party records — you must attach an authorization to it, otherwise you are bypassing our longstanding rules of practice, and I am not going to have it.”
9 percent — the year-over-year increase in gun violence deaths (excluding suicides) as of September 15, according to an analysis of Gun Violence Archive data. So far this year, 14,516 people have been fatally shot nationwide, compared to 13,216 by the same point last year. [CNN]