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Crack and Homicide in New York City: A Case Study in the Epidemiology of Violence (From Crack in America: Demon Drugs and Social Justice, P 113-130, 1997, Craig Reinarman and Harry G Levine, eds. - See NCJ-170648)

NCJ Number
Date Published
18 pages
This study of 414 homicides in New York City between March and October 1988 found that only 31 (7.5 percent) were caused by the effects of drugs and were therefore classified as psychopharmacological; of the 31 homicides, most involved alcohol and only 5 (1.2 percent) involved the use of crack.
About 2 percent of homicides were motivated by economic compulsion and were classified as crack-related because homicides were committed during robberies and burglaries by crack users to obtain money to finance their habits. About 40 percent of all homicides and nearly 75 percent of all drug-related homicides were related to exigencies of the illicit market system. Of these systemic homicides, 65 percent were classified as being primarily crack-related. The vast majority of crack-related homicides occurred between dealers or between dealers and users. Systemic homicides occurred for a variety of reasons, including territorial disputes, dealer robberies, and drug-related debts. Overall, 52.7 percent of homicides were in some way drug-related. The study methodology and sample are described in an appendix. 47 references, 13 notes, and 3 tables

Date Published: January 1, 1997