Los Angeles Crime Essay

Los Angeles Crime BY 601a_91 Crime-Based Economic and City Development Los Angeles is one of the biggest and most populated metropolises around the world. It was founded by governor Filipe de Neve, a Spanish governor of Las California, in September 4, 1781. Los Angeles started as a small city with population of 11,500 people and continued steadily growing. At the beginning 20th century, the discovery of oil brought a lot of attention, and it shaped the economy, politics and social growth of the city. As population grows, it is obvious that a crime rate also grow.

However, y looking at crime statistics, it suggests an economic and city development of Los Angeles, and it might be possible to reconstruct a historical development of a city based on crime rates. During the Mexican era, Los Angeles consisted out of five big ranchos with a very little population. In 1910s, according to the calculation the population of the Los Angeles was 319,198 people according to Dr. Gayle Olson- Raymer [1]. The construction of a transcontinental railroad to Los Angeles completely changed the city. The industrialization brought a lot of immigrants who were seeking ew work places.

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By looking crime data points, it is obvious that most of crimes are concentrated in the Downtown of Los Angeles. All violent, property, and other crimes took place there. This concentration of crimes suggests that the downtown was the center of Los Angeles, and a lot of people lived or spent their time in the downtown. At that period of time, the downtown has become a financial center of Los Angeles. In early 20th century, banking institutions started clustering around South Spring Street, and it became Spring Street Financial District.

Also, commercial growth was he reason of hotel constructions in the downtown, such as the Alexandria in 1906, the Rosslyn in 1911, and the Biltmore in 1923, in order to entertain the population of Los Angeles. 1910s the downtown was flourishing, and it was a center of prosperity in Los Angeles. However, crime rates points out that the downtown also was the most dangerous place in Los Angeles. The number of property crimes is 49 according to the crime data points, and most of them took places in the downtown. For example: “Daylight robber binds and gags young woman.

At Wilcox building in downtown, a an break into house when she was alone, beat her, and made her helpless. After a Desperate defense, he ransacked the room and took all valuables” (Los Angeles Times, 1911). This is one of the many cases of property crimes in the downtown. The main purpose of burglaries to steal from someone who is wealthy, and the downtown was most attractive place for burglaries. By looking 1910s data points, one might claim that wealthy and middle class people lived or spent most of their time in the downtown. It also suggests that the downtown was the center of concentration of eople in 1910s.

Therefore, the crime data points might reconstruct economical and city development of Los Angeles at that time. In 1930s, Los Angeles was industrially developing and attracted a lot of people throughout the United States; therefore, the population of Los Angeles dramatically increased up to 1,238,048 people which made the city to expand[l]. According to Fred W. Viehe (1981), “By 1930, a suburban industrial network founded by the oil industry surrounded the city of Los Angeles transportation and shortage of lands made it possible to live in suburban areas and ork in the city.

Also, Fred W. Viehe also states (1981), “Inter-urban transportation and the middle-class quest for the ideal were responsible for suburbanization”(p. 3). By looking the crime data point, it is obvious that the concentration of crimes became less and started moving to the North. Now, one can see more crimes which happened in Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, and Burbank. The crime data points shows the direction in which the city is expanding, and it also suggests economic development in Los Angeles.

According to the crime data points, 110 rimes took place in the city, and 22 of them were property crimes, which mostly happened in the North of the city. For example: “Fur Robberies Clearing Up. Thefts of thousands of dollars worth of furs from the homes of Alice White, motion picture actress, and half a dozen other residents of Hollywood in the early part of December” (Los Angeles Times, 1935). There are also many other property crimes which happened at the North of Los Angeles. On the other hand, the South and the downtown area mostly violent crimes took places.

Thus, one might reconstruct an conomic and city development of Los Angeles at that period of time because crime rates suggest more prosperous neighborhoods were in the North, where most of crimes are property crimes, and poor neighborhoods were in the South and East, where most of crimes are violent crimes. Therefore, it might depict the economic picture of Los Angeles in 1930s. In 1950s, Los Angeles became a center for production of aircraft, war supplies to ammunition because of World War II. Also, at that time Los Angeles had already become an industrial and financial giant with population of ,970,358 people. l] Building freeways in 1940s launched the suburbanization of the city. Freeways made it even easier to commute to the city. Now, by looking the crime data point, one can see that they are equally spread out across the city, and in 1950s, the downtown is not concentration of crimes any more. However, there is a slight displacement of crimes to the North, and most of property crimes concentrated in the North of Los Angeles. In 1950s there are more crimes in Santa Clarita, Pacoima County, and San Fernando valley that it were in 1910s and 1930s. For Example: Bandit Takes $8000 Fires Gun at Customer.

A tall, youthful bandit robbed a Burbank department store of $8000 last night, escaping in an accomplice’s car after firing one shot at a customer” (Los Angeles Times, 1959). Crime data points suggest that affluent people have been constantly moving to the North of Los Angeles. In the South of Los Angeles, there are still less property crimes and more violent crimes compare to the North. It suggests that more affluent people lived in the North, and it brought criminals to there. Therefore, crime data points show an economic and city evelopment. According to Karen A. Kopecky and Richard M.

H. Suen (2004), “Suburbanization has been observed in cities throughout the United States since the late nineteenth century when omnibus, commuter railroads and streetcars were first implemented. But technological progress in transportation made its biggest contribution during the twentieth century with invention of the automobile and later modern highway systems. The adoption of the private vehicle as the dominant form of transportation in the United States, combined with the rising income levels, ncouraged movement to less dense area where housing was more affordable”( p. ). phenomenon, and it happened in other cities throughout the United States in the twentieth century. The key factors were rising real incomes and falling automobile prices which drove urbanization in the United States. One can see the direction of property crimes in the North of Los Angeles, and concentration of violent crimes in the South of Los Angeles throughout 1910s and 1950s. Crime date points suggest that affluent people tend to move to the North, and poor people tend stay in South- East part of Los Angeles.

Construction of better transportation system made it easier to live in suburbans. Therefore, here might be a link between crime rates and a city development. Maybe it is even possible to reconstruct history of a city by looking at crime rates. Reference list Dr. Gayle Olson-Raymer, (- – – -). Southern California and Los Angeles – A Case Study in Urban and Suburban Growth in early 20th Century. Retrieved from http:// users. humboldt. edu/ogayle/hist383/LosAngeles. html Fred W. Viehe (1981). Black Cold Suburbs. The Influence of the Extractive Industry on the Suburbanization of Los

Angeles, 1890-1930. Journals Urban History, 1-3. Karen A. Kopecky and Richard M. H. Suen (2004). A quantitative analysis of Suburbanization and Diffusion of the Automobile. Dissertation abstract, p. l . Daylight Robber Binds and Gags Young Woman. (1911, Apr 25). Los Angeles Times (1886-1922). Retrieved from http:// search. proquest. com/docview/159596125? accountid=14749 Bandit Takes $8,000, fires gun at customer. (1959, Nov 15). Los Angeles Times (1923-Current file). Retrieved from http://search. proquest. com/docview/167608262? accountid=14749


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