National advocacy group says Missouri leads nation in Black homicide victimization
ST. LOUIS — A national advocacy group reported Wednesday that Missouri has the highest rate of homicides among African-Americans of any state in the nation.
The Violence Policy Center reported federal crime figures show the homicide victimization rate for Blacks in Missouri was 57.3 per-100,000 for the year 2017, the latest year for which figures are available.
For perspective, that compares to an overall national homicide victimization rate of just over 5 per 100,000.
The group said this is the 11th year in a row that Missouri has ranked either number one or number two for black homicide victimization rates.
Additionally, six percent were younger than 18 and one percent was older than 65.
St. Louis Public Safety Director Jimmie Edwards puts some of the blame for gun violence on state lawmakers, pointing to the removal of the requirement for gun permits in 2017.
"Which means anyone can carry a gun. So, any conflict or any argument, tends to result in gun violence," Edwards said.