New study shows Indiana has the highest rate of black homicide victims in the country

According to a new study Indiana has the highest rate in the country of black homicide victims.

The study, conducted by the Violence Policy Center, uses FBI homicide data to rank each state by the amount of black homicide victims per population percentage. The latest data is from 2013.

There were 213 black homicide victims in Indiana, which is 34.15 victims per 100,000 people.

That’s over double the national rate of black homicide victims, and eight times the overall homicide rate nationwide.

  • Indiana rate per 100,000 people: 34.15
  • National rate per 100,000 people: 16.91
  • Overall homicide rate nationwide: 4.27

Previous studies by the Violence Policy Center show Indiana’s rates have been climbing every year since 2011.

  • 2011:  #11
  • 2012:  #6
  • 2013:  #1

The Boys and Girls Club of St. Joseph County sees over eleven hundred kids each year. That’s eleven hundred kids they hope will grow up and change those scary statistics.

Ten year old friends Ja’Liyah and Renee couldn’t say enough good things about their time at the club.

“It’s super fun and we get to be as loud as we want sometimes,” said Ja’Liyah.

“It’s fun and I love being with the staff cause they are super nice,” said Renee.

That staff, including Director of Program Impact Kristen Strom, provides education and activities to keep the girls out of harms way.

“Those kids could really be exposed to some challenging situations,” said Strom.

South Bend parent Rosa Roma knows firsthand the impact violence can leave on a child.

“Just talking about it, it kind of brings tears to my eyes because I saw a lot of things I shouldn’t have seen. I felt scared. So like I said extremely shy at school, not able to communicate or get involved with anything in school,” said Roma.

Strom says it’s those key developmental years in a person’s life that will affect the future of the community.

“If you don’t invest when they’re young, that’s our future so being able to offer them some great experiences and a safe place and learning opportunities will only help them in the future,” said Strom.

“It’s nice to have a lot of people care about you when you don’t have that many people around you a lot,” said Ja’Liyah.

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