Record number of illegal guns, increase in homicides reported in Hartford in 2022

Record number of illegal guns, increase in homicides reported in Hartford in 2022
Published: Jan. 2, 2023 at 1:48 PM EST
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HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - A record number of illegal guns were taken off streets in Hartford in 2022. The city also saw an increase in the number of homicides.

With that year in the books, Channel 3 dug into the capital city’s crime statistics.

Three hundred sixty-seven illegal guns were taken off Hartford’s streets during the calendar year. Fifty-eight of them were ghost guns, according to police.

With a new year underway, they said their efforts will continue to try to keep illegal guns off streets.

“[A] lot of hard work by those divisions, by our intel divisions and narcotics, search warrants and street crimes units stopping people committing crimes,” said Lt. Aaron Boisvert, Hartford Police Department.

Police said 2022 was a busy year for them.

The 367 illegal guns that were seized, 58 ghost guns included, was a record for Hartford.

“That’s a big number,” Boisvert said. “It’s probably the biggest I’ve seen since I’ve been here.”

The number of non-fatal shootings in Hartford decreased.

In 2022, there were 136, compared with 148 in 2021.

Homicide numbers, however, went up to a number that hasn’t been seen since 2003.

In 2022, there were 39 homicides.

In 2021, there were 34.

Boisvert said many of the city’s homicides were over personal disputes.

“That’s what makes them so hard to prevent,” he explained. “We’ve seen a homicide in a hotel, we’ve seen multiple inside apartments [and] homes. Those are near impossible to prevent.”

Efforts were underway to bring the department’s detective division to full staff.

“The chief has just made new sergeants, he’s putting more people on the street, more detectives to beef up units,” Boisvert said. “Staffing has been a challenge for everybody, not just us. We’re getting fewer and fewer people who want to do this job, unfortunately.”

He also said that throughout 2023, more recruitment efforts will get underway to try to fill openings.

Staffing has been a challenge for other departments in the state as well.