We have started working on the Canadian provincial homicide statistics for 2020. Some homicides are still trickling in and some 2020 homicides might not be classed as such for a while. We are still also tracking down some homicides in small centers we missed during 2020. If you find we missed one in your province or municipality, please email as always at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With that out of the way, based on the preliminary stats Manitoba has maintained its crown as the province with the most homicides per capita. The good news for Manitoba is that the homicide rate actually went down in 2020 and Saskatchewan was a close second place, unlike last year. In fact, through most of 2019, Saskatchewan was actually ahead of Manitoba for most of the year, but Saskatchewan managed to go without a December homicide. Manitoba on the other hand had three December homicides.
Manitoba finished with 68 homicides in 2020, 56 males compared to 11 females with one homicide we don’t know the gender as of yet. For the 67 known gender homicides 83.6% were male. Saskatchewan finished with 56 homicides, 43 of them male and 13 of them female. Thus 76.8% of the homicides victims were male.
Manitoba and Saskatchewan being one and two amongst the provinces isn’t surprising, however number three is. Nova Scotia finished third. Most of that was the 22 people Gabriel Wortman killed, however even without those homicides Nova Scotia was still up significantly compared to the six homicides they had in 2019. But not up enough to be third place without Wortman. Nova Scotia had 34 homicides total in 2020, with 18 male and 16 female, thus 52.9% of homicides were male. This relatively low percentage amongst the provinces was due to Wortman killing a lot of women.
In fourth place was Alberta where the homicide rate went up significantly with 128 homicides, followed by New Brunswick in fifth place with 15 and British Columbia in sixth place with 81 homicides. We will keep this page updated as we add more missed homicides or newly classified homicides from 2020.
Ontario’s homicide rate was up slightly to 224 total. Quebec continued its run as one of the provinces with the lowest homicide rates with only 63 murders, a big change from the biker war era. Congratulations to PEI for having a single homicide.
Overall Canada had 680 homicides that we have been able to find so far for 2020. That’s a slight increase over the 676 that Statscan reported for 2019. So Covid hasn’t seemed to have a big effect on the overall number of homicides in Canada in 2020. As mentioned at the start of the post, the 680 number we have currently is inevitably an under count compared to what Statscan will report much later in the year, but it shouldn’t be off by too much as we have improved over the years at collecting homicide data.
Check out the individual 2020 provincial homicide pages here (and also the 2021 ones). We will also do a rundown on the year’s Canadian homicide statistics on the Homicide Canada podcast hopefully before January is done.