CashApp founder Bob Lee's death by stabbing has led to comments that San Francisco was dangerous and crime-ridden. However, data shows that violent crime in San Francisco - particularly homicides- is well below the average for cities of similar size.
George Tita is a professor of criminal justice at the University of California in Irvine. He believes that perceptions are based more on the profiles of the people involved in certain crimes rather than actual data.
Tita stated that a high-profile technologist's murder would get more attention than an impoverished black person murdered in a poor neighborhood. It's low-hanging fruits. Nobody wants to see the actual statistics. The majority of states and counties that have the highest crime rates are located in red states, compared to blue states.
Lee was killed in a stabbing incident that occurred in the Rincon Hill neighborhood of the city. According to a San Francisco Police Department statement, officers responded early Tuesday morning to a report of a stabbing. The officers found "a 43-year old adult male victim with apparent stab injuries."
The police statement stated that officers rendered aid to the victim and called medics. The victim was taken to a hospital in the area with serious injuries. The victim died from his injuries despite the efforts of first responders and doctors.
According to data from the police department, San Francisco had 56 homicides in each of 2022 and 2021. This is an increase of over 36% compared to 2019, when there were only 41 homicides. The Major Cities Police Chiefs Association data shows that despite the rise, San Francisco's homicide rate is still lower than other cities with similar populations.
Indianapolis, for instance, saw 271 homicides between 2021 and 2022. Jacksonville, Florida saw 129 murders in 2021, and 154 in the following year. Columbus, Ohio had 204 murders in 2021, and 140 in 2020.
According to California Department of Justice statistics, violent crimes in San Francisco including murder, rape and aggravated assault reached a record high of 7,164 in 2013. They have decreased significantly over the last couple of years. According to the Major Cities Police Chiefs Association, San Francisco is now in the middle of the pack compared to other cities with a similar size population.
As shown in a few attention-grabbing videos, property crimes in San Francisco tell a very different story. Although property crime levels in San Francisco are still below those of 2017, they have increased by more than 14% between 2020 and 2021. This is the latest year for which California DOJ has data.
There are people who, at the end of it all, don't give a damn about the truth.