Chicago Surpasses 600 Homicides:
A Monday night homicide put Chicago's total homicides thus far in 2016 at over 600, affirming statements made by residents that the city has turned in a "war zone" in recent years. CBS reports
that the more than 600 people killed this year represents a 24% increase compared to the same time last year, and is approximately 100 more homicides than the combined totals in New York and Los Angeles. It is also far above the Chicago's yearly 2015 total, with 486 people killed. Nonfatal shootings have spiked as well: As of last week, over 2,100 people were injured in shooting incidents, up from 1,400 people wounded in the same time period in 2015. Of the homicide victims, 540 died of gunshot wounds, 28 were stabbed to death, 19 were beaten to death, nine died in arson-related homicides and two were run down by people driving cars. Chicago police have determined that, of the over 600 murders recorded so far, 571 are first-degree murders. They have made arrests in 115 homicide cases so far.Record Number of Opioid Overdoses in 2014, says CDC:
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in a report released earlier this year, said that more people died from drug overdoses in 2014 than any other year on record, fueling the nationwide concern over the deadly drug epidemic. Penny Starr of CNS News reports
that in 2014, nearly 19,000 people died from prescription opioid overdoses, "equivalent to about 52 deaths per day," while 28,000 people died from non-prescription opioid overdoses. The report also found that opioid overdoses have quadrupled since 1999. Officials say the surge in opioid overdoses is driven by heroin and illegally-made fentanyl. Opioids include heroin, morphine, codine and methadone, among others, and can be natural, semi-synthetic or synthetic.Asylum Seekers Spike Dramatically:
In less than a decade, the number of illegals who have sought asylum in order to gain easy access to the U.S. has spiked 900%, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Paul Bedard of the Washington Examiner reports
that in 2009, about 8,000 people sought asylum, but the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) estimates that number to reach at least 80,000 this year. The CIS analysis also states that while 90% of asylum seekers have their requests granted, a House panel found only 30% to be fraud free. Among those seeking asylum, 80% come from the Central American countries of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, who have come to the border in droves after President Obama freed up restrictions of those requesting asylum, allowing them to stay in the U.S. while they pursue their request. Once an illegal immigrant is granted asylum, they become entitled to federal programs including green cards, Social Security, school loans, welfare, Medicaid, cash and housing assistance.