SHREVEPORT, La. — Shreveport is on a record pace for homicides in 2021. The current record is 86 killings set in 1993.
A deeper analysis of the homicides during 2021 shows most are committed in just a few local zip codes.
At current pace, Shreveport would end up at 93 homicides — seven more than 1993, the city’s most violent year ever.
3 Investigates has been tracking homicide data and statistics all year and analyzed the information for a recent report.
Here is what we found:
The rate of homicide in Shreveport this year is 38.4 per 100,000. That’s nearly six times the national rate, which is 6.5 per 100,000, according to FBI statistics. That would place Shreveport fifth in the nation in homicide rate this year — comparing to the same FBI statistics.
Mothers like Yolanda Braziel are feeling the pain.
“Detectives came to my house, and they told me that my son was killed, and that he died a hero,” Braziel said in a KTBS interview, explaining that her son helped some younger kids get down on the ground when the shots rang out.
Kelvin Braziel, 23, was shot and killed March 10 in the 100 block of Hamilton Street, about three blocks from home.
“It’s indescribable. It’s so hurtful. I cry every day. And I cry every night,” Braziel said.
Kelvin is part of what is sadly a record pace of killings in Shreveport in 2021.
KTBS wanted to take an even closer look to show where the most challenged areas are, breaking down homicides by zip code.
Kelvin Braziel was killed in zip code 71101. He’s one of three men killed in this area of Lakeside/Allendale this year.
KTBS’ analysis found two other Shreveport zip codes account for nearly half of all killings in the city, 47.8%.
In zip code 71108, there have been 14 killings this year. It’s an area west of Interstate 49, south of Midway, and north of Louisiana Highway 3132 (the Inner Loop).
But the deadliest zip code in Shreveport is 71109. The zip falls along the Interstate 20 corridor, mostly west of Jewella Avenue. So far this year 20 people have been killed there by violence.
In fact, the crisis is so concentrated in Shreveport that just the city’s top three zip codes have more homicides this year than the entire cities of Boston, St. Paul, Minnesota and Omaha, Nebraska, all bigger cities than Shreveport.
Other zip codes of concern include 71106, hugging I-49 through the Cedar Grover neighborhood where 13 people have been killed this year, including three early Thursday morning.
In zip code 71107, which falls along North Market Street, 10 people have been killed this year.
Adding together Shreveport top four zip codes for homicides, 71109, 71108, 71106, and 71107, accounts for more than 75% of all killings in the city this year.
Heading back to Shreveport’s deadliest zip code, 71109, there have been 20 homicides in an area with just under 20,000 people. The homicide rate alone for this zip code is currently 102 per 100,000.
If this area were its own city, it would have the highest homicide rate in the nation, when compared with FBI statistics. The most violent city in America currently is St. Louis with 64 homicides per 100,000.
Other statistics coming out of our investigation show homicide victims in Shreveport are younger than the rest of the country. The average age in Shreveport this year is 27.4.
Of the 77 people killed so far this year, 75 were killed by gunfire, 93% of victims were black, and 89% of victims were male.
For Yolanda Braziel, all those numbers won’t bring back her son and they don’t really soothe a mother’s pain.
“As a mother I feel I robbed. It’s senseless violence and it’s guns. and it’s always the innocent person.” Yolanda Braziel said.
But she did say she hopes something can be done, so other mothers don’t suffer as she is.
‘He was my rock, I’m gonna miss him. You know, people don’t realize what they take from you,” Yolanda Braziel said.