Homicides Up Slightly In New York City in '03

New York City ended the year with a few more homicides than in 2002 -- but with fewer than 600, a number seen by police and city officials as a benchmark of a less violent era. The last time a year's total dropped below that number was 1963. The final tally for 2003 was 596 homicides, up from 587 in 2002, according to official statistics released yesterday. But police officials pointed out that those numbers could change as pending investigations were closed.

By IAN URBINA

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