Report: Seattle sees lowest number of shootings in 4 years

Mar 13, 2019, 1:57 PM

Guns shootings...

A new report on gun violence identified some startling trends. (AP)


Data presented by the Seattle Police Department to the city council on Wednesday showed that in 2018, the city saw its lowest number of shootings in four years.

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There were 312 total shootings in Seattle last year — 233 were labeled by SPD as “shots fired,” 66 were non-fatal, and 13 were fatal. That number is down from recent years, that saw 314, 387, 338, and 360 shootings in 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 respectively.

SPD also broke out the data by neighborhood, with two neighborhoods tied for the most shootings in 2018 with 18: Central Area/Squire Park and Madrona/Leschi. Tied for the second most with 17 shootings in Brighton/Dunlap and Rainier View.

Over the last seven years, Rainier Beach has seen the most total shootings, with 161 combined over that period.

Demographically, a majority of 2018 shooting victims were black at 52 percent. Thirty percent were white, 10 percent were Asian, 7 percent were “unknown,” and 1 percent were American Indian/Alaskan Native.

The breakdown of shooters presented more questions than answers, with 45 percent of suspects categorized as “unknown.” Thirty-seven percent were black, 16 percent were white, and 2 percent were Asian.

As part of its goal to dramatically reduce gun violence, SPD touted a handful of projects and initiatives as key to 2018’s decline in shootings. That includes 1,408 firearms SPD recovered in 2018 as part of the Regional Gun Crime Task Force, 79 firearms seized through Extreme Risk Protection Orders, and 137 firearms recovered through court orders.

The SPD also pointed toward its 68 percent homicide clearance rate over the last nine years, sitting above the national average of 60 percent.

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