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From Compstat to Fakestat: The Epidemic Of Fraudulent Official Crime Reports
That crime in America is decreasing is a critical Main Stream Media meme. Many factors are at work. One of them is that official statistics have become, to a significant but undetermined extent, a manufactured illusion.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s, urban crime was momentarily beyond the Establishment’s ability to redefine back into normalcy. Fueled in part by the crack wars, New York had 1,905 murders in 1989, the last year Ed Koch was mayor, and 2,245—the city’s all-time record—in 1990, the first year that black Leftist and “racial healer” David Dinkins was mayor.
- Murder in NYC During the Koch Years
- Murder in NYC during the Dinkins Years
A city dominated by street thugs is ungovernable. Billions of dollars in financial and tourist business—a.k.a. virtually the city’s entire tax base—were on the line.
In response, over the past 20 years, three brilliant Irishmen, New York City police commissioners Ray Kelly and William Bratton, and Bratton’s number two man, John Timoney, brought about miraculous crime reductions in New York City and elsewhere.
The official story: Republican Mayor Rudy Giuliani revolutionized crime-fighting with his first police commissioner, Bratton, who employed “broken windows” policing. The theory of “Broken windows,” or “order maintenance policing,” comes from the late James Q. Wilson and the husband-and-wife team of George Kelling and Catherine Coles. It focuses on low-level, “quality-of-life” offenses, such as public drinking, public urination, and fare-beating. [BROKEN WINDOWS: The police and neighborhood safety (PDF), Atlantic Monthly, March 1982] The idea is that this sends a message about the system’s willingness to tolerate general disorder. (Funny, this is never applied to illegal immigration).
But, actually, the drop in official crime numbers began under Mayor Dinkins’ last police commissioner, Ray Kelly (1992 through 1993).
Giuliani beat the incompetent Dinkins in their close return match in 1993, and appointed Bratton to run the NYPD.
The modest improvements of the last two Dinkins years accelerated under Giuliani, continuing throughout his two terms (1994 through 2001), and into the regime of his nominal Republican (now officially independent) successor, Michael Bloomberg (2002-???).
- Murder in NYC, during the Giuliani Years
- Murder in NYC During the Bloomberg Years
The Killing of Murder by Chris Mitchell, New York Magazine, Jan 7, 2008.
Knife Killings in City Increased 50 Percent in 2008 by Christine Hauser, New York Times, April 27, 2009.
Murders Rise in New York City, but Remain Near Historic Lows by Karen Zraick, New York Times, January 3, 2011.
Murder in New York City: 2011 (pdf), Police Department, City of New York.]
(Mysteriously, the current New York Times Homicide Map radically contradicts the reports on recent years’ murder counts in the same newspaper that I cited above, stating the numbers as only 386, 329, and 209, respectively, for 2009, 2010, and 2011. [Murder: New York City, New York Times, retrieved on June 8, 2012.])
The brash, egotistical Bratton wanted all the credit for the crime reduction, so Giuliani pushed him out after 27 months. But under Jewish former fed (DEA and the U.S. Marshal’s Service) Howard Safir, a good company man, and the corrupt, since-convicted Bernard Kerik, the crime figures continued to drop.
Proponents credited three factors for the miraculous “turnaround”: the focus on “quality-of-life” offenses; COMPSTAT, whereby the department constantly pours statistics into its computers, determines where and when crime is peaking, and floods the zone with cops; and the public theater of departmental meetings, where the commissioner publicly humiliates commanders who failed to produce “good” numbers. Those features have been institutionalized nationwide.
To the degree that the reduced murder numbers are legitimate, they have been brought about by a controversial policy, which the Commissioner generally avoids discussing—of the confiscation of thousands of guns through the racial profiling of black and Hispanic males, who were stopped and frisked some 595,000 times in 2011. [Record Number of Street Stops Prompts a Protest by Kate Taylor, New York Times, February 14, 2012.]
And then there’s fakestat. It was originally exposed halfway through Giuliani’s first term, by liberals.
“… on January 29, 1996, Newsday’s Leonard Levitt charged that the city had failed to disclose a recent double-rape, a shooting homicide, and the fatal shooting of a car thief by a cop.” [My report “Crime Stories,” Chronicles magazine, August, 1996; not online].
The NYPD brass asserted that a reporter had stolen the crime reports from the headquarters press room. Right.
In my first VDARE.com investigation, “Disappearing” Urban Crime, in May 2004, I reported that the NYPD’s two main fakestat methods were turning felonies into misdemeanors or non-crimes, and discouraging crime victims from filing reports.
In October 2005, The Village Voice’s Paul Moses exposed another fakestat method: the NYPD had undercounted by thousands the number of aggravated assaults, whose victims had been hospitalized or treated in ERs:
“From  until 2002, the number of assault victims who were either hospitalized or treated in emergency rooms in the city went up in every year but one for a total increase of 19 percent…. "[These Stats are a Crime; While Bloomberg boasts of crime drop, the hospitals' work on assault victims is booming, by Paul Moses, Village Voice, October 25, 2005.]
The official story for the same period was that aggravated assaults had decreased 24 percent.
Since 2002, Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Kelly have blown off the scandals.
Just as New York’s pioneering policing methods have been institutionalized nation-wide, so, it appears, has fakestat:
Under Commissioner John Timoney (1998-2002), the Philadelphia PD was caught reducing crime numbers by counting burglary complaints under the non-crime category of “missing property,” and by “disappearing” massive numbers of rapes by variously “unfounding” them and sitting on rape complaints.[Philadelphia Crime Statistics Under Attack by Chief, Reno, By Debbie Goldberg,The Washington Post, Tuesday, December 1, 1998]
In 2009, Dallas police were caught “disappearing” thousands of cases. The DPD would rule that crime victims’ police reports were “unfounded” without investigating them, and routinely ignored vehicle burglary complaints.
That same year, Detective Mickey East, from the Domestic Violence Unit, was found to have stashed 2,274 domestic abuse complaint files in his garage. In 508 of those cases, the victim was again victimized.
The police brass cast East as a rogue cop. But he had only served the last five years of an almost 40-year-long Dallas PD career in Domestic Violence. He likely continued habits he’d acquired elsewhere in the department. [See “Re-Victimization” and “Disappearing” Scandals: Dallas PD Revolutionizes Crime-Fighting Through Wholesale Stashing, “Unfounding,” & Ignoring Complaints, Nicholas Stix, Uncensored, February 11, 2012.]
Last year, Police Superintendant Gerry McCarthy was caught covering up racist attacks by black gang-bangers on white beachgoers on Memorial Day weekend. [See The Great Chicago Memorial Day Gang Attack Cover-Up, Nicholas Stix, Uncensored, July 7, 2011.]
In June 2011, it was also revealed that young blacks had been terrorizing whites and the occasional Asian in the city’s wealthiest, safest neighborhoods—the Gold Coast, Streeterville, and Lakeview—for a year, but that police and the media had conspired to cover up the attacks. [When race is relevant in news coverage, by Gerould W. Kern, Chicago Tribune, June 10, 2011]
In April, Mayor Rahm Emanuel contended that “overall crime” and rape were down 10 and 15 percent, respectively, in the first quarter of this year, despite homicides having increased by 60 percent and non-fatal shootings increasing by 37 percent!
While it is possible for homicides and shootings to drop while crime overall rises, it is impossible, as a practical matter, for the opposite to occur. Murder is the pinnacle of violent anarchy. If it is getting worse, violent crime overall is getting worse. [See Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel: Screw the Stupid, Phony Crime Stats, I Care about Individual Sob Stories! Besides, Crime is Dropping…, Nicholas Stix, Uncensored, April 15, 2012.]
In Nashville, former police chief Ronal Serpas (2004-2010) radically abused a traditional Nashville PD fakestat that should never have been tolerated, clearing crimes “by exception.”
Crimes Against Persons, Property
SOURCE: TBI Data, Accessed 3/25/2010
Cleared by Arrest
Cleared by Exception
“Exceptional clearances mean they've got a suspect, they know where the suspect is, they've got enough evidence to charge the suspect, but they cannot proceed—usually because either the DA or the victim doesn't want to prosecute.”
[NC5 Investigates: The Truth About Crime; Expert: Nashville's Crime Clearance Stats “Not Credible” by Phil Williams, News Channel5, May 11, 2010.]
Under Chief Serpas, the NPD was eventually “clearing” more cases by “exception” than by arrests.
On January 13, Police Chief Ralph Godbee asserted that homicides rose by 12 percent in the nation’s murder capital, from 308 in 2010 to 344 in 2011, while, suspiciously, “serious” crimes decreased by 8 percent overall. [Detroit: Murder Up 12%, but “Serious” Crime is Down; Broken Windows Policing is on the Way, Nicholas Stix, Uncensored, January 14, 2012.]
The most recent fakestat scandal hit the Milwaukee PD, which is run by another bright, capable Irishman, Chief Ed Flynn.
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reporter Ben Poston determined that over the course of the past three years, the police had deliberately misclassified at least 500 cases of aggravated assault as misdemeanor “simple assault” in order to transform an increase in violent crime of at least 1.1 percent into a 2.3 percent decrease.
Some 1,300 cases of aggravated assault had been deceptively reclassified as misdemeanor assault—so that the increase in violent crime in fact could be several points higher than the 1.1 percent that Poston conservatively estimated. But the Department stonewalled his requests for more information on 800 additional cases which followed the same pattern.
“In Milwaukee, aggravated assaults have made up about half of all violent crime since [Chief Ed] Flynn took charge in 2008. Among the four violent crimes, the largest percentage drop has come from aggravated assaults, falling 35% since 2007.”
[Journal-Sentinel reporter Ben Poston quoted in Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn: ‘The Computer Ate My Crime Stats’…, Nicholas Stix, Uncensored, May 23, 2012.]
My conclusion: Diversity is not strength. It is, among other things, irrepressible interracial crime. The American political Establishment, liberal and “conservative,” simply cannot handle this. Something has to give. Honest crime statistics are just the beginning.
Nicholas Stix [email him] is a New York City-based journalist and researcher, much of whose work focuses on the nexus of race, crime, and education. He spent much of the 1990s teaching college in New York and New Jersey. His work has appeared in Chronicles, the New York Post, Weekly Standard, Daily News, New York Newsday, American Renaissance, Academic Questions, Ideas on Liberty and many other publications. Stix was the project director and principal author of the NPI report, The State of White America-2007. He blogs at Nicholas Stix, Uncensored.