President Donald Trump claims murder in Philadelphia has been “terribly increasing.”
He is terribly wrong.
“Here in Philadelphia, the murder rate has been steady ― I mean ― just terribly increasing,” Trump said in a rambling speech at the GOP retreat on Thursday.
In fact, Pennsylvania’s largest city has seen violent crime drop to “levels unseen in decades,” Philly.com reported earlier this month, citing Philadelphia police. Burglaries fell to a record low, and the total number of homicides decreased from 2015 levels, remaining below 300 in 2016.
“We’ve got a long way to go,” Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross told the publication. “Nobody is suggesting anything other than that.”
Take a look at the stats from Philly.com’s Chris Palmer:
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney blasted Trump’s remarks in a statement.
“President Trump’s false statements today were an insult to the men and women of the Philadelphia police force—the very same men and women who are working long hours today to ensure his safety,” it read.
Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) also lashed out at Trump on Twitter, referring to the president’s comments as “alternative facts.”
Trump has already gained notoriety for lying or misleading the public about crime in the U.S. Hours after he was sworn in, he claimed “killings have risen by 50 percent” in the nation’s capital. In fact, violent crime there dropped by 10 percent last year.
Hate crimes, on the other hand, did increase across the country after Trump’s win.
In the 10 days after the election, 36 hate crimes were reported in Pennsylvania, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks incidents of hate.
In one case, someone wrote the words “Seig Heil 2016” and drew a swastika on a storefront in South Philadelphia hours after the election was called. In another, black students at the University of Pennsylvania received racist texts.
As Trump thanked his supporters inside the Loews Philadelphia Hotel, at least 1,000 protesters confronted the president with a show of resistance outside.