The city installed 16 bulletproof surveillance cameras in high-crime areas and flooded a West Side neighborhood with a 100-officer task force.
Possibly as a result, the Chicago Police Department said summer homicides are down sharply and the year-to-date number is down slightly.
Through Friday, there were 384 homicides during 2003, compared to 400 on the same date in 2002, a four percent decline.
The numbers show some relief for a city that has been at or near the top of the nation's list for homicides in recent years.
Gang activity continues to get the blame for the largest share of homicides in Chicago.