Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday took issue with a characterization of New York City as "going downhill" with a rise in murders and a more visible homeless population, saying, "Look at the facts and stop at the hysteria."
He said overall crime in the city is down 6 percent from last year. Last year was a record-low year for murders, each incident this year appears more dramatic by comparison, de Blasio said at an unrelated Bronx event.
"It doesn't make any single murder acceptable," de Blasio said. "We fight every day to stop every single crime, but we've got to put this in perspective."
"We did have an uptick in murders. There's no question about it," he said, adding that he has confidence Police Commissioner William J. Bratton and the NYPD will turn around the situation as they did with the increase in shootings.
The mayor said each shooting and murder is reported directly to him. "I feel them very personally. I always want to know how we can stop them," he said.
Bratton was scheduled to address the crime situation at a news conference Tuesday afternoon.
The surge in violent crime citywide was underscored this past weekend when 22 people were hurt in 10 separate shootings. Ironically, the weekend saw a 55 percent reduction in shootings with 18 incidents compared with the 40 in the same three-day period in 2014, according to NYPD statistics.
But the shootings, including at a Brooklyn house party where 11 were hurt, prompted a number of politicians to demand that more be done to take guns off the streets.
With Anthony M. DeStefano