With a month left to go in 2021, the number of homicides across Cook County has already topped 1,000 — the highest total in more than 25 years, according to county officials — with victims being predominantly people of color.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed its 1,000th homicide of the year over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, though that total has since grown to at least 1,009, per county officials.
The last time Cook County saw more than 1,000 homicides was in 1994 when the total hit 1,141. Three years earlier in 1991, the medical examiner’s office handled a record 1,229 homicides.
According to the office, Black people have accounted for 81% of homicide victims this year, while Latinos accounted for nearly 15%. Males also accounted for 88% of victims in 2021. Those killed ranged in age from one month old to 84 years old, while 20- to 29-year-olds accounted for the largest number of homicide victims.
The medical examiner’s office has confirmed 777 homicides in Chicago alone this year, though new crime data released Wednesday by the Chicago Police Department shows 741 homicides in the city this year. That marks a 3% increase over the first 11 months of 2020, per the CPD.
Outside of Chicago, Harvey has seen the highest total of homicides of any Cook County municipality this year with 30, followed by Maywood (16) and Dolton (11).