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The city that became safe: New York's lessons for urban crime and its control
  1. David Hemenway
  1. Correspondence to Professor David Hemenway, Harvard Injury Control Research Center, Harvard School of Public Health, 677 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA; hemenway{at}

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Edited by Franklin E Zimring. 2011. Published by Oxford University Press, New York, 2011, pp 272, 8 chapters, References, Index, hardcover. USD29.95. ISBN 978-0199844425.

The 1990s witnessed a large decrease in crime in almost all major US cities. However, while crime rates levelled off in most cities, the decrease continued in New York City throughout the 2000s. From 1990 to 2009, the homicide rate in New York City fell by 76%; the robbery rate fell by 81%, the burglary rate by 85% and the auto theft rate by 93%. ‘The size and the length of the decline are without precedent in the recorded history of American urban crime’ (p. 1).

In a previous book, The Great American Crime Decline, legal scholar and criminal justice expert, Franklin Zimring, examined the broad crime decline of the 1990s and concluded that the cause remains largely a mystery. In his new book, The City that Became Safe, Zimring analyses the reasons for the continued decline in crime rates in New York City in the …

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