Chicago ended one of its deadliest summers on record by tallying its 90th murder for August on Wednesday night, the most for the city in a single month in almost two decades.
According to police numbers analyzed by the Chicago Sun-Times, the 90 homicides are the highest in one month since August 1996 and far surpass the city’s 54 murders in August 2015. Numbers compiled by the Chicago Tribune show 2,829 shooting victims in Chicago this year through Sept. 1, inching toward the 2,988 victims of gun violence in the city for all of last year.
The sheer number of murders in Chicago in 2016 exceeds New York City and Los Angeles combined and received renewed attention last week when Nykea Aldridge, the cousin of NBA star Dwyane Wade, was killed while pushing her infant in a baby stroller on the city’s south side.
Through Aug. 31, Chicago has recorded 467 homicides and is on pace to hit 700 by the end of the year, which would be the most since 1998.
While Chicago is an outlier, a number of U.S. cities have also experienced increases in gun violence this year, including Baltimore, Dallas, Las Vegas and Memphis. Chicago police say that a small group of offenders in a handful of districts on the city’s south and west sides are responsible for the spiking murder rate.