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Manitobans have highest proclivity for homicide

Manitoba once again had the highest homicide rate among the provinces last year, a Statistics Canada report said Thursday.

Manitoba recorded 4.10 homicides per 100,000 population in 2012 (52 homicides in 2012). That number is down slightly from 2011 (4.23 homicides per 100,000; 53 total).

Saskatchewan was second-highest among the provinces, with a rate of 2.69 homicides per 100,000 people in 2012 (29 total). Saskatchewan's rate was 3.59 the previous year (38 total).

Nationally, Canada recorded 543 homicides in 2012. There were 55 fewer homicides than in 2012 and there was a 10 per cent drop in the homicide rate (1.56 in 2012 compared to 1.73 in 2011), giving the country its lowest homicide rate since 1966. Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan made up the bulk of that drop, accounting for 49 fewer homicides in 2012.

Among the major Canadian cities, Winnipeg was once again near the top of the list. Despite recording six fewer homicides in 2012 (33) than the previous year, Winnipeg landed the second-highest homicide rate in 2012 (4.09 per 100,000 people), trailing only Thunder Bay, Ont. (5.81). Regina was third with a rate of 3.06 homicides.

Winnipeg has recorded 24 homicides in 2013.

Quebec, the Northwest Territories and Ontario were the only jurisdictions with increased homicides and they were only three, two and one higher, respectively.

In 2012, the homicide rate was highest in Nunavut at 14.84 for every 100,000 in the population.

Despite the overall decrease in homicide in 2012, fatal shootings increased to 172 from 158 in 2011.

Although the number of shootings increased in 2012, the rate of firearm-related homicides remained among the lowest in almost 50 years.

About 65 per cent of firearm homicides involved handguns.

Shootings accounted for one third of all killings while 31 per cent involved stabbing.

-- staff / The Canadian Press

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