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Toronto residents questioning the city's safety amid wave of shocking crimes

It's been a bad year for crime in Toronto, December being no exception.

An ongoing wave of highly-publicized violent crimes has shocked the city in just the past few days, most notably the Sunday mass shooting in a Vaughan condo building that left six dead, including the shooter.

On Monday, six people were injured in a subway stabbing, and on Tuesday, eight young girls were charged with the murder of a homeless man.

And here we are, not even halfway through the second-last week of the year, reeling from three of the most shocking crimes witnessed in 2022 committed in the last three days alone.

It's the kind of week that has locals feeling a bit on edge, as people are confronted with the idea of being attacked or killed in places they frequent in their day-to-day, like the TTC, or should otherwise feel sale, like in their own homes.

Statistics certainly back up people's growing fears of the outside world.

The Toronto Police Service data portal shows that Toronto experienced a 17.2 per cent spike in overall major crimes in 2022, including a 9.8 per cent increase in assaults, a 44.2 per cent spike in auto thefts, 6.5 per cent growth in break and enters, a 28.5 per cent jump in robbery, an 11.3 per cent increase in sexual violence, and a 35.8 per cent gain in theft over cases.

The only major crime statistic to actually see a decrease in 2022 was homicide, dropping an even 16 per cent from 2021's murder rate.

The apparent boom in crime has some GTA residents — who likely only experience big city life through lens of scary news reports —- thankful they live out in the nether reaches of the region.

Others are poking fun at the idea that Toronto is not a safe place to live, joking about moving to locales better known for their high crime rates.

Despite all the terrifying news reports and statistics that indeed show a spike in crime over the previous two years, the numbers are actually pretty close to the figures recorded back in 2019.

This seems to indicate that criminal activity was less prevalent during lockdowns and other public health restrictions rather than pointing to a runaway crime increase in 2022.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau

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