NYC murder rate on pace for double-digit increase

New York City could see a double-digit increase in the murder rate by the end of the year.

The latest numbers provided to The Associated Press on Friday show homicides totaled 464 through Thursday. That's up 16 percent from the 400 reported at the same time last year.

The 2010 total is only seven short of that for all of last year.

New York Police Department officials say the increase is a concern but not alarming when put in the context of the dramatic crime-fighting gains in the past two decades. There were a record 2,245 homicides in 1990.

In recent years, city officials have relied on favorable crime statistics to tout New York as the safest big city in America.