A history of murder rates in Maryland and Baltimore since 1975

Baltimore had more murders in 2015 than the entire state of Maryland had in 1977 or 1978, despite having only 15% as many people.

The Baltimore murder rate broke records in 1993 but had been in a general decline until a sudden explosion in 2015. The murder rate in 2015 set a new record for the highest murder rate in the history of the city. In 2016, the rate dipped slightly but still exceeded the 1993 rate.  So far, 2017 is on track to set a new all time high.

Many are blaming the so-called “Ferguson Effect.” This refers to the media’s deification of young black male criminals who were killed by justifiable self-defense shootings. This led to the rise of the violent protest movement Black Lives Matters. Which culminating in large black race riots in Ferguson in 2014 and then in Baltimore in 2015.

The state of Maryland previously published reports with crime statistics by race online. These appear to have been deleted from their website in 2015. We were able to recover the 2010 report from Archive.org. In that year, 77% of murder victims were black and 77% of known offenders were black. However, Federal data suggests that blacks who commit murder are significantly less likely to be caught than members of other races. Baltimore, in particular, is notorious for its unsolved murders.

The tables below show the number of murders and the murder rate for Baltimore and the state of Maryland for every year from 1975 to 2015.

JURISDICTION YEAR POPULATION MURDER MURDER RATE
Baltimore City 1975 864100 259 29.9733827103
Baltimore City 1976 860974 200 23.2295051883
Baltimore City 1977 827494 171 20.6648024034
Baltimore City 1978 781730 199 25.4563596127
Baltimore City 1979 790901 245 30.9773283888
Baltimore City 1980 784554 216 27.5315657048
Baltimore City 1981 797429 228 28.5918871774
Baltimore City 1982 798175 227 28.4398784728
Baltimore City 1983 805527 201 24.9526086649
Baltimore City 1984 788604 215 27.263366658
Baltimore City 1985 771097 213 27.6229838788
Baltimore City 1986 783542 240 30.6301385248
Baltimore City 1987 764893 226 29.5466163241
Baltimore City 1988 763880 237 31.0258155731
Baltimore City 1989 763138 259 33.9388157843
Baltimore City 1990 736014 305 41.4394291413
Baltimore City 1991 748099 304 40.6363328918
Baltimore City 1992 755517 335 44.3404979636
Baltimore City 1993 732968 353 48.1603562502
Baltimore City 1994 739180 321 43.4264996347
Baltimore City 1995 712209 325 45.6326724318
Baltimore City 1996 716446 333 46.4794276191
Baltimore City 1997 719587 313 43.4971726838
Baltimore City 1998 662253 315 47.5649034432
Baltimore City 1999 650588 305 46.8806679496
Baltimore City 2000 651154 261 40.0826839734
Baltimore City 2001 660826 256 38.739395847
Baltimore City 2002 671028 253 37.7033447188
Baltimore City 2003 644554 270 41.8894305209
Baltimore City 2004 634279 276 43.5139741344
Baltimore City 2005 641097 269 41.9593290875
Baltimore City 2006 637556 276 43.29031489
Baltimore City 2007 624237 282 45.1751498229
Baltimore City 2008 634549 234 36.876584787
Baltimore City 2009 638755 238 37.2599823093
Baltimore City 2010 639927 223 34.8477248186
Baltimore City 2011 626848 197 31.4270764204
Baltimore City 2012 625474 216 34.5338095588
Baltimore City 2013 622671 233 37.4194398005
Baltimore City 2014 623513 211 33.8405133494
Baltimore City 2015 621252 344 55.3720551403

 

JURISDICTION YEAR POPULATION MURDER MURDER RATE
Maryland 1975 4098000 435 10.6149341142
Maryland 1976 4144000 352 8.4942084942
Maryland 1977 4139000 333 8.0454215994
Maryland 1978 4143000 338 8.1583393676
Maryland 1979 4149000 406 9.7854904796
Maryland 1980 4192211 399 9.5176507099
Maryland 1981 4261000 422 9.9037784558
Maryland 1982 4265000 431 10.1055099648
Maryland 1983 4304000 367 8.5269516729
Maryland 1984 4349000 354 8.1398022534
Maryland 1985 4392000 350 7.9690346084
Maryland 1986 4463000 398 8.9177683173
Maryland 1987 4535000 444 9.7905181918
Maryland 1988 4644000 452 9.7329888028
Maryland 1989 4694000 540 11.5040477205
Maryland 1990 4781468 553 11.5654857462
Maryland 1991 4860000 569 11.70781893
Maryland 1992 4908000 596 12.1434392828
Maryland 1993 4965000 632 12.7291037261
Maryland 1994 5006000 579 11.5661206552
Maryland 1995 5042000 596 11.820706069
Maryland 1996 5072000 588 11.5930599369
Maryland 1997 5094000 501 9.8351001178
Maryland 1998 5135000 511 9.9513145083
Maryland 1999 5172000 492 9.5127610209
Maryland 2000 5296486 438 8.2696338667
Maryland 2001 5375156 463 8.6137034907
Maryland 2002 5458137 528 9.6736303981
Maryland 2003 5508909 525 9.5300176496
Maryland 2004 5558058 521 9.3737776756
Maryland 2005 5600388 552 9.8564599453
Maryland 2006 5615727 547 9.7405019867
Maryland 2007 5618344 554 9.8605567762
Maryland 2008 5633597 493 8.7510696985
Maryland 2009 5699478 440 7.7200052356
Maryland 2010 5773552 425 7.3611530649
Maryland 2011 5828289 398 6.8287622663
Maryland 2012 5884563 372 6.3216249023
Maryland 2013 5928814 387 6.5274437687
Maryland 2014 5976407 363 6.0738835223
Maryland 2015 6006401 553 9.2068444981

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