A new study from Yale University wanted to take a relational look at the crime rate in Chicago. In other words, instead of using a pure statistical and geographical approach, they investigated the relationship between various murder victims, and they found that there was a massive spike in the murder rate among those who associated with other victims. This pretty much reinforced what we already knew — that murders in Chicago are mainly gang related, and that the best advice to staying alive is avoiding stupid people doing stupid things (like drug dealing). But it’s nice to see a study backing up that common sense conclusion.
From the article in US News:
Andrew Papachristos, an associate professor of sociology at Yale, analyzed police and gun homicide records from 2006 to 2011 for people living in a high-crime neighborhood in Chicago. He found that 41 percent of all gun homicides occurred within a network of less than 4 percent of the neighborhood’s population, and that the closer one is connected to a homicide victim, the greater that person’s chances were for becoming a victim. Each social tie removed from a homicide victim decreased a person’s odds of becoming a victim by 57 percent.
So, in other words, you can reduce your risk of being murdered by over 50% simply by avoiding the murdering crowd. Or I suppose you could move out of Chicago, which would help too.