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BALTIMORE'S GRIM RECORD | 2017 homicides are highest ever, per capita

BALTIMORE'S GRIM RECORD | 2017 homicides are highest ever, per capita

BALTIMORE (WBFF) - Hardly a day passes without news of yet another tragedy.

With three days left in 2017, Baltimore has reached a grim milestone. There have been 343 homicides, the most per capita in the city's history.

Twenty-four years ago, there were 353 murders. But back then, there were nearly 110,000 more residents in the city.

Mayor Catherine Pugh says several initiatives will be fully implemented in 2018 to address the violence.

That includes a program which targets youthful offenders.

"This is not a sprint, it is a marathon," she said. "We can't arrest our way out of the problems of crime that the city has, and there needs to be a focus on 16 to 17 to 24-year-olds."

Police commissioner Kevin Davis says his department has accelerated the hiring of new officers.

"2017 will be the calendar year where we've actually hired more police officers than we've lost to retirement or resignation," said Davis. "That's very unusual."

Two years ago, there were 344 homicides in Baltimore, but that was at a time the city's population was higher than it is today.

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