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Coronavirus: Miami was murder-free for 7 weeks for first time since 1957

MIAMI — For the first time since 1957, the city of Miami has gone at least seven weeks without a murder, according to figures released by the Miami Police Department.

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Miami did not have a reported homicide from Feb. 17 to April 12 -- a total of seven weeks and six days -- the Miami Herald reported. In 1957, the city went seven weeks, three days without a reported murder, according to the newspaper.

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While social distancing and stay-at-home orders have played a part, approximately half of that time period took place before restrictions were put in place March 12 by Miami Mayor Francis X. Suarez, according to the Herald. There has been a homicide in the city since April 12.

“It started in mid-February, well before anyone was locked down,” Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina told the newspaper in an interview from home, where he is recovering from COVID-19. “Why? Honestly, I don’t know. I’m just grateful it continues to go down the way it has.”

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The trend is different countywide. In Miami-Dade County, there have been more murders committed over the same time period this year in Hialeah and unincorporated areas of the county than in 2019, the Herald reported.

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The Miami Police Department said other crimes have also decreased since restrictions began, including domestic violence reports. However, Colina told The New York Times he was concerned that incidents involving domestic violence and child abuse may have been underreported.

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Still, the pandemic has caused crime to slow down in the South Florida city.

“We can say that it’s due to our police high visibility, attributed with the pandemic and the stay-at-ome order,” a Miami Police Department spokesman told CBS News.