Supt. Garry McCarthy on Chicago murder rate falling 69% in March - KMSP-TV

Supt. Garry McCarthy on Chicago murder rate falling 69% in March

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Two men were shot dead, and 21 others were wounded by gun fire in violence across the city over the holiday weekend.

Despite the violence, the city's murder rate is dropping when compared to the same month last year.

Chicago officials say there were 70 homicides in the city during the first three months of 2013 - 50 fewer than the same period last year when the slayings made national headlines.

The city's police department says there were 16 homicides in March, a 69% decline from the 52 homicides recorded in March 2012. Not only that, but police say the total of 120 slayings for the first quarter is the same as 2009. That ties for the lowest number since the first quarter of 1959.

The drop in the number of killings began after a particularly deadly January. But it coincides with a police initiative launched in February that's put hundreds of officers working overtime on the streets.

Police Supt. Garry McCarthy spoke on homicides and crime in the city on Good Day Chicago Monday morning.

He spoke to the six-month downward trend when it comes to Chicago's homicides, and how the police department is trying to further that decline – despite sentiments that warmer weather will substantially increase the murder rate in Chicago.

McCarthy also spoke to how they're keeping on top of other criminal acts in the city, including the Magnificent Mile melee that took place Saturday night. At one point, more than 150 teens swarmed the popular tourist district, creating disturbances.

SEE: 17 arrested after melee erupts on Mag Mile

ALSO: Group of women attacked on CTA Red Line

The superintendent said the public must keep the overall trend in mind, as police work to curb violence in our city.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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