The downward trend continued in Montreal during the summer season

The downward trend continued in Montreal during the summer season.

The Montreal City Police Service (SPVM) has presented a comprehensive review of its endeavors to address armed violence, including the borough of Park-Extension, during the recent summer season spanning from June 1 to September 30, 2023. Despite initial concerns about a potentially hot summer, these fears did not come to fruition. The positive outcomes affirm that the reduction in armed violence events, which was noted from January to May, has continued throughout the last four months. This progress is of particular significance for Park-Extension, highlighting the effectiveness of local law enforcement strategies in ensuring the safety and well-being of the community during the specified period.

Situation from June 1 to September 30, 2023

According to preliminary data, a total of 35 firearm discharge events were recorded from June 1 to September 30, 2023, compared to 43 for the same period in 2022. There were also 5 murder events and 13 attempted murders by firearms, as opposed to 8 and 20 from June to September 2022. Overall, the statistics demonstrate a decrease in firearm events by 25.4% compared to last year’s summer season. Additionally, various units of the SPVM made 133 arrests related to firearm events during the same period, with a total of 258 firearms seized.

Table 1 – Firearm-related events between January 1 and September 30 (comparison between 2023 and 2022)

IncidentsYear 2023Comparison between 2023 and 2022
January 1 to September 30
Murders8– 6, a decrease of 43.9%
Attempted murders28– 12, a decrease of 30%
Firearm discharges73– 28, a decrease of 27.7%
Total109– 46, a decrease of 29.7%

A 360-Degree Approach

“We believe that the most important measure to consider in terms of armed violence is the number of events that have occurred. We have successfully reduced this number by nearly 30% in Montreal since the beginning of the year, and we are pleased with this significant reduction, while remaining fully aware of the importance of continuing our efforts on multiple fronts,” stated SPVM spokesperson and communications manager Inspector David Shane, emphasizing the significant contribution of community, institutional, and governmental partners to this decrease.

The observed decline in armed violence events in the city is attributed to several factors, including different approaches by SPVM units: police visibility, criminal investigations, prevention, and intelligence.

“We evolved our strategy by forming collectives at the start of the summer season to carry out targeted deterrence, which was an additional measure that also helped in our efforts to reduce the number of events in our territory. We have decided to continue the collectives’ experience in the coming months,” Inspector Shane added.

It’s worth noting that collectives are teams of SPVM members, including police officers and civilian personnel with various expertise. Operating based on intelligence, these teams focus on individuals exhibiting high-risk behavior regarding armed violence. The collectives also engage with recent or potential victims to prevent acts of retaliation.

The work done by specialized teams in combating armed violence, such as ÉCLIPSE, ARRET, and the Multisectoral Firearm Dedicated Team (EMAF), is also essential. Additionally, locally deployed actions by neighborhood stations and increased police visibility in certain public spaces have directly contributed to reducing the number of armed violence events.

Table 2 – Firearms (AAF) recovered between January 1 and September 30 for 2023 and 2022

YearSeized AAFVoluntarily surrendered AAFTotal Recovered AAF

Together Against Armed Violence

Emphasizing the importance of public collaboration in the fight against armed violence, Inspector Shane reiterated that anyone with information can contact 911 or their local police station. It is also possible to communicate anonymously and confidentially with Info-Crime Montreal at 514 393-1133 or via the reporting form available on the website Info-Crime Montreal may offer rewards of up to $3,000 for information leading to the arrest of suspects, with certain conditions applying.

It is essential to note that the SPVM closely collaborates with CENTAURE, the Quebec strategy against armed violence implemented by the Ministry of Public Security.