Murder rates in the state of California have increased by 31% in 2020, making it the deadliest year since 2007, authorities said Thursday.
In a new report released by the state, authorities said they recorded 2,202 cases of homicides throughout 2020. The figures also rose from 4.2 to 5.5 homicides for every 100,000 people.
The report suggested that 6.5% of the homicide cases involved Black people, 45% accounted for Hispanics, and 16% of the victims were White. Among all the reported cases of homicide, 34.2% were because of arguments, 28.2% were gang-related deaths, 8.5% involved rape or robbery, and 6.7% were from domestic violence.
It is currently unclear why the homicide rate jumped. But Attorney General Rob Bonta attributed the rise in homicides to an increase in gun sales.
“With more weapons, more economic stagnation, more desperation, I think those are all potential components and drivers of where we are today,” he said, according to Fox News.