With homicide and crime rates on a downward trend in July, Police Supt. Garry McCarthy is "encouraged."
Homicides in the month of July fell by 11 percent this year, as compared to July 2011, making it the third least deadly July in a 25-year period, police statistics show.
In total there were 49 homicides across the city in July, a decline from the previous year's 55 deaths.
"I am encouraged that our crime numbers, including murders and shootings, are trending downward at a steady pace," McCarthy said in a letter to Ald. James Balcer, adding that the murder totals for the month of July are among the lowest in the city since 1987.
McCarthy equates the downtick partially to the Gang Violence Reduction Strategy, which was implemented after the year's highest homicide increase of 66 percent more killings through the month of April this year than the same period in 2011.
With the one month decrease in July, the year-to-date number of 308 homicides remains above last year's 243 in the same period, but now only by a 26.7 percent increase.
"That represents a 40 percent reduction of that number in three months," McCarthy said.
The almost 27 percent increase is also substantially lower, than the nearly 40 percent jump in homicides that Chicago reportedly saw in the first six months of 2012 as compared to the first half of 2011.
“We are encouraged by improving benchmarks but will not rest until we see drops that bring a high level of safety and quality of life to all areas of the city," McCarthy wrote to Balcer. "We will build on this momentum to achieve results truly representative of our world class city and police force.”