Boston Homicides from 2010 until May 2014

Boston Homicides from 2010 until May 2014

This map demonstrates where homicides occurred in Boston from January 2010 until May 2014. From this map, it is clear that the Roxbury and Dorchester areas have the highest homicide rates in the city, mostly through gunshot wounds. It is also clear that the homicide rates decreased each year from 2010 to May 2014. Along with being divided by year, the map is further divided into how the homicides occurred. Overwhelmingly, gunshot wounds (represented by circles) caused the most homicides between 2010 and May 2014, followed by stabbings (represented by squares), and then traumas and other reasons (represented by diamonds).

Further, the gunshot wounds occurred mostly within the Roxbury and Dorchester area, whereas stabbings and traumas were more likely to occur in the outskirts of the city, in neighborhoods such as Charlestown, West Roxbury and Brighton. The year 2010 marked a spike in Boston homicides from previous years, which police linked with the release of felons who re-entered the drug trade, according to CBS-Boston. The next three and a half year decrease could be a result of increased police work and an aging population, according to the Boston Globe.

The information for this map originally came from a spreadsheet provided from my professor which was originally obtained from the City of Boston. To organize it, I took the data from January 2010 to May 2014 and sorted the data based on year, case number, squad assigned to the case, name of victim, location and weapon used. Some of the data was missing information about the weapon used, but I filled in the missing information through news reports about the homicide.

I began searching for patterns through creating pivot tables based on the police district, age and weapon used and noticed that certain districts had more homicides than others. The police districts were set up geographically, so a map would work the best to demonstrate where the homicides occurred. Further, the weapons used varied slightly by location, so the map also is helpful to see the variation of homicide by location as well as by year.

Overall, I think the interactive map is extremely useful to demonstrate where the homicides occurred and to see the patterns of the different neighborhoods, both in terms of the number of homicides as well as the way homicide occurred.

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