The media is a powerful force and when Chicago media outlets pair with a few high profile cases and a troubled economy, the result is more and more Chicago residents being scared to leave their homes. This article from the Chicago Tribune paints a picture of a city living in fear and a perceived jump in crimes when crime is actually down.
No crime is good crime, particularly when you are talking about crimes against innocent victims. But, when an entire city is sequestered to their homes due to fear of crime that isn’t increasing, a reality check is in order. Currently, only 30% of Chicago residents feel safe within their neighborhood.
Crime in Chicago and in cities across the country is down. You wouldn’t know this from watching the evening news as news stations are in the business of ratings and quite frankly, frightening violent crime sells. Murders are holding steady from last year while rapes, assaults, and crime in general are down.
In addition to media outlets influencing people’s outlook on the safety of their city are a few cases of police officers being killed. Three officers killed in separate incidences, about 3 months apart has perpetuated the unease of the city.
“If they’re shooting police, what chance do I have?” is the question posed by a professor of criminal justice and psychology at Loyola University in Chicago. And he’s right. Because police are viewed as the pillar of law and order, the murder of an officer is seen as a serious threat to overall community safety.
Another mistaken assumption by the people is that when the economy is down, crime is up. This isn’t always the case and is proving to not be the case during the current recession. Just like crime fell in the Great Depression, crime has also fallen over the past few years—people aren’t out robbing innocent citizens because they were laid off; it’s simply not happening.
This isn’t to say crime isn’t a problem. Any amount of rapes is a bad thing as is any number of assaults or robberies. However, a realistic view of the current crime situation shows perhaps people shouldn’t be as frightened as they are.
Because of the perceived threat, however, society demands the courts hold those convicted of crimes accountable. You can expect to be slapped with some serious penalties for criminal offenses in the Cook County courts.
Whether you are facing charges of a violent nature or a simple vandalism charge, you should have an aggressive defense attorney on your side on your day in court. Contact us today for a free consultation on your case.