(CHICAGO) -- After a long and violent 2016 in Chicago ended with a record number of shootings and the most homicides in two decades, the city has seen a decrease in killings and shootings so far this year.
There were 56 homicides and 257 shootings in the city in May 2017, down from 68 and 316, respectively, in May 2016, the Chicago Police Department said.
Overall, shootings are down nearly 14 percent this year compared to last year and this is the third straight month when shooting incidents have decreased citywide, the police said.
Last year, homicides in the Windy City reached 762, which was the highest level since 1996, when 796 homicides were recorded, according to historical data from the Chicago Police Department.
In a statement released overnight, the Chicago police pointed to several policies implemented in May that may have contributed to the decrease, including: the launch of a police "Summer Mobile team" to target lakefronts and parks; the deployment of 1,300 additional police officers citywide over Memorial Day weekend; multiple raids over Memorial Day weekend; and the launch of "the fourth annual Summer of Faith and Action, a citywide initiative designed to promote positive community engagement and alternative programming for youth throughout the summer months."
In the police statement, spokesman Anthony Guglielmi added, "more work certainly remains to be done."
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