More shooting fatalities, injuries already reported in Seattle area than in 2020

More shooting fatalities, injuries already reported in Seattle area than in 2020
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Seattle has already seen more fatalities and injuries from shootings in 2021 than throughout the entirety of 2020.

Data from the King County prosecutor’s Shots Fired Project showed that 73 people were killed and another 283 injured in shootings in the county this year by the end of September, according to The Seattle Times.

Data from the Shots Fired Project accounts for 79 percent of the county's population, the Times reported. 

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In all of 2020, there were 69 firearm-related homicides and 268 nonfatal shootings. Between 2017 and 2020, total gunshot victims increased by 36 percent in the Seattle area based on these figures.

“While 2020 set all sorts of records, 2021 is blowing that out of the water,” King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said to The Seattle Times. “It’s disheartening to see these numbers continue to go up and I have to think the pandemic has something to do with it.”

Satterberg added that economic uncertainty, school closures, isolation and other side effects of the COVID-19 pandemic likely contributed to the increased violence.

"We don’t underestimate the devastating consequences that being shot has on somebody’s health and life expectancy and economic outlook. It can radically change their life forever," Satterberg also said of people who survived shootings.

Young Black men and people of color are disproportionately affected by the county's gun violence, which remains consistent with past reports. In 2021, 85 percent of victims were male and 81 percent were people of color, the Times reported.

In King County, 7 percent of the population is Black, but 50 percent of the county's shooting victims were Black, the Times also noted.

The reports of gun violence in Seattle come as homicides appear to be up nationwide. The FBI's Uniform Crime Report released last month showed that homicides increased nearly 30 percent from 2019 to 2020.

The jump marked the "largest single-year increase" the FBI has reported since it began collecting this type of data in the 1960s.

The Hill has reached out to the King County Prosecutor's Office for comment.