Change in New Orleans crime in the first quarter of 2007 compared with the same period of 2006:
Overall – 59%
Violent crime – 1 – 107%
Murder – 182%
Robbery – 135%
Assault – 103%
Rape – -39%
1 – Includes murder, robbery, assault
Source: New Orleans Police Department, By Adrienne Lewis, USA TODAY
Given these appalling numbers, let’s instead deny the growth of crime and not accept with grace and gratitude the help that is offered. Criminal activity outpaces the number of returnees in the last year, as excused by Warren Riley. Additionally, the district attorney contradicts himself: Katrina and the flood destroyed our resources to quickly prosecute crime, but, on the other hand, we’re doing alright and don’t need outside help. This just goes to show that Riley and Jordan care more about their egos and turf than the people of New Orleans.
… Superintendent Warren Riley said the increase is not an accurate measure but merely reflects the return of thousands of residents who had abandoned the city because of Katrina. Riley pointed out that crime is slightly down when compared with the last quarter of 2006.
… New Orleans District Attorney Eddie Jordan rejected the notion that the system had failed. “The storm interrupted our ability to prosecute cases … the federal government is doing what it can, but this is really our battle to win,” Jordan said.
Speaking of the relationship between NOPD and the DA’s office, nola.com just released an interactive Google map of 2006 murders. (Only heaven really knows the accuracy and completeness of this map, but I’m going with it for now.) The ratio of solved to unsolved cases is about 1:1 — not good, but not bad either. Next, take a look at the ratio of solved murder cases to convictions, which is terrifying, to say the least. The next time you see Eddie Jordan, ask him if we can really win “our battle.”