WASHINGTON, D.C. — Across the country, many major American cities are reporting spikes in violence.
Nationwide, homicides are up more than 44% compared to where they were in 2019.
On Thursday, President Joe Biden will speak about the violence and provide some solutions to reduce the bloodshed.
The following cities set new records for homicides in 2021:
- Colorado Springs
In Tucson, there were 93 homicides in 2021. In 2020, the city reported 68 homicides.
In Milwaukee, there were 197 in 2021 compared to 190 the year before.
In Indianapolis, 271 homicides occurred in 2021. That's a rise from 215 in 2020.
Other major metropolitan areas like Tampa Bay, Kansas City, Denver and Cleveland didn't set records but they came close.
PRESIDENT SET TO SPEAK
Mayors and police chiefs all around the country have their own ideas as to what is needed to reduce violence. On Thursday, Biden will share ideas. Whether or not they will make a difference is still unclear.
The president will deliver his remarks from New York City, a city reeling from the deaths of two police officers who were killed in the line of duty last month.
Biden is expected to address efforts to provide more federal funding to hire more officers nationwide and improve community programs that are meant to prevent violence.
The president will also highlight ways for police to better engage suspects, especially those experiencing a mental health crisis.
Biden is also expected to talk about how well his newly-created “Strike Force” program is combating gun trafficking, which is the process of firearms being moved from one city to another.
GUN TRAFFICKING UPDATE
It's estimated 50,000 guns are moved around the U.S. each year through gun trafficking, usually from states where it's easier to buy a gun to places where it is tougher.
That's how many criminals around the country are getting their guns, according to New York City Mayor Eric Adams.
“We know that new guns are arriving by car, by bus and by train every day," Adams said during a recent speech on gun violence.
Biden's visit to New York is tacit approval of the city's new approach of utilizing more police on the street, which is the opposite of what the "Defund the Police" movement called for in 2020 after the death of George Floyd.
Whatever specifics Biden lays out Thursday, the reality is that his power on the issue of guns is relatively limited. Efforts to pass comprehensive gun control and universal background checks in Congress remain stalled.