CHICAGO — According to the Chicago Police Department, homicides and total shootings in the City took a dip in comparison to 2021.

Police said there were 695 murders in 2022, compared to 804 in 2021. An even larger decrease was reported in total shootings, as CPD said there were 2,832 in 2022, compared to 3,555 in 2021.

Despite the reduction in both crime statistics, former federal prosecutor Duane Deskins feels government officials and political leaders in Chicago need to join forces with the community to construct a strategy to keep the city safe on a long-term scale.

“I don’t think that those numbers are going to say anything other than “yeah, it’s a little bit lower than it was last year, but are you safe? Do you feel safe?” And the answer to that is unequivocally no,” Deskins said. “We should be thinking about a long-term strategy to bring us all together — businesses, cops, courts, nonprofits — to try and think about a comprehensive solution to reduce the violence in this city and not simply a week-to-week, holiday-to-holiday type [of] strategy.”

To further reduce crime, CPD set out a strategy last year to improve community relations, increasing their monthly town halls across Chicago and adding family liaison officers who work with victims of crime, but Deskins still thinks City policy makers need to do more.

“Economic vitality of this city is tied to safety. If people don’t feel safe, they’re not going to restaurants. If people don’t feel safe, they’re not going to establish businesses,” Deskins said. “You have to reduce the violence significantly — this is not significant — and then prevent it from coming back.”