Violent Crime Hits the Homeless Population

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It’s no secret that life of the street is dangerous, but most people are shocked to learn the degree of violent crime San Diego’s homeless population faces on a regular basis. San Diego’s homeless population deals with sexual assaults, physical assaults, and robberies on a semi-regular basis. Some are even murdered.

In fact, there have been three fatal attacks against the homeless since mid-September. One victim was killed by being hit over the head with a skateboard, and two were fatally stabbed. The crimes are unrelated, and one suspect has been arrested. The police are still trying to solve the other two crimes.

An Inside Look at Homeless Crime

There are approximately 9,100 homeless people in San Diego County. That number is larger than it has been in the past, and that means violent crime is likely to increase, as well, according to homeless advocates. Just how much it’s gone up in San Diego is anyone’s guess, though. The police don’t include the housing status of victims when logging crimes. Because of that, homeless advocates have to piece together information to get a better idea of how much violent crime truly occurs.

A National Trend

The National Coalition for the Homeless uses some of its resources to track violent crime against the homeless. While it can’t rely on police data, it pulls information from homeless advocates, service providers, and news reports. It also gets information from the homeless population. While these numbers cannot be viewed as hard evidence, they do illustrate a disturbing situation that can’t be ignored.

According to the organization, 43 violent acts against the homeless occurred in California in 2014 and 2015. That is the most out of all of the states. The numbers are disturbing on a national level, as well. The organization has documented 1,650 violent acts perpetrated by housed assailants against the homeless from 1999 to 2015. These acts include rapes, beatings, mutilations, and homicides. In fact, 428 of those victims were killed.

Since the organization has to scrape the data together, it’s possible the numbers are even higher.

Why the Homeless?

The homeless population is viewed as an easy target. In fact, some people randomly target the homeless so they can commit violent acts. They don’t know the people they are targeting, so the assaults are basically done for fun. They throw objects and beat them up for thrills.

Of course, that’s just one example of why the homeless population is targeted. There is also targeted violence, as well as homeless on homeless violence.

Dealing with Charges for a Violent Crime

San Diego wants to crack down on violent crime, and as that happens, there might be more arrests. If you are charged with a violent crime, it’s imperative that you hire an attorney. Otherwise, the police will question you by yourself, and you might accidentally incriminate yourself. This is true, even if you are innocent.

Your attorney will shelter you and help you mount a defense. It’s the smartest call you’ll ever make.

Author Photo

Kerry L. Armstrong


Attorney Kerry Armstrong opened up his law firm in June 2007. Mr. Armstrong attended Thomas Jefferson School of Law, San Diego, California, and received his B.S. from Middle Tennessee State University. Kerry L. Armstrong became certified by the State Bar of California’s Board of Legal Specialization for criminal law in August 2020, making him one of the few criminal defense attorneys with a criminal law legal specialization certificate in San Diego County.  Between 2014 – 2019, Mr. Armstrong was selected for inclusion in the California Super Lawyers list, an honor only awarded to 5% of the nation’s attorneys.

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