With 2007 homicide numbers in, New Orleans again on track to be nation's bloodiest city

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- New Orleans is again on track to being ranked the bloodiest city in the nation.

There were 209 homicides in the city last year, a nearly 30 percent increase from 2006. Based on its population, that means a homicide rate of about 71 per 100,000 residents. To compare that number with some other notoriously violent cities, the rate for Gary, Indiana, was 48.3 and Detroit's was 47.1.

Police have said the killings are generally drug-related or retaliation.

New York's and Chicago's 2007 homicide totals were the lowest in more than 40 years. In Philadelphia, slayings dipped slightly after reaching a nine-year high in 2006. But in Atlanta, Miami, Dallas and Baltimore, homicides increased.

The FBI's official rankings for 2007 won't be out until later this year.

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