Experts cited many other reasons for the increase, including people having to live together longer, police departments having difficulty quarantining their officers, increased homelessness and reduced access to some mental health services. Although data for 2021 have not yet been released, homicides in 87 cities this year are up about 10 percent from last year, Jeff Asher, a crime analyst in New Orleans, told the Times. The reasons for the rise in crime are not entirely clear, but may lie in the surge in gun purchases and the impact of the pandemic on people’s mental health and the economy, the Times said. There were fewer homicides in large cities than in the worst years, but in mid-sized cities such as Albuquerque, Milwaukee, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Des Moines, Iowa. Some also speculate that the protests following the killing of George Floyd caused the cops under scrutiny to abandon certain aspects of crime-fighting or reduce public confidence, which then forced them to take the law into their own hands. This is a country where everyone is suffering from post-CVID trauma syndrome and doesn’t know what’s next, Peter Winograd, a University of New Mexico professor who works as a consultant for the Albuquerque Police Department, told the Times. A breakdown of the numbers shows that of the 2,020 dead, 9,913 are black, 7,029 are white, 497 are of other races, 315 are of unknown race, 14,146 are male and 3,573 are female. A smaller percentage of deaths are on the parallel coasts of the major cities of New York and Los Angeles, which accounted for nearly 14 percent of U.S. homicides in 1990 and only 3.8 percent in 2020. While the numbers for 2021 are still high, according to the New York Times, they seem to be declining as the year progresses. She cited the pandemic, the impact of social justice protests and bail reform, which has resulted in the release of more convicted felons in some cities. It’s a perfect storm, Harold Medina, police chief of Albuquerque, N.M., told the Times. About 21,500 people were killed last year, according to 16,000 police departments nationwide. Overall, felonies, including rape, armed robbery, burglary and car theft, fell about 5 percent in 2020, according to the statistics. Despite the sharp increase, the numbers are still well below the violence of the 1990s, the Times reported. There were 4,901 more murders in 2020 than in 2019, according to the data.