Columbus homicide rate higher than average; short of record - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

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Columbus homicide rate higher than average; short of record

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Homicide Statistics Homicide Statistics
Homicides- Past 5 Years Homicides- Past 5 Years

The crime scene has been a scene all too familiar to Columbus. Police have investigated more murders this year than past years. The most recent was Sunday morning.

“We've had 22 this year,” says Columbus Police Chief Ricky Boren. “In the past we've had a lot more than that. We're working on it; we're working hard on it.”

It’s been an above-average year for homicides based on statistics provided from the past 14 years. The highest number of murders came in 2008 when there were 30. The lowest was in 2011 when there were only 9. The median is 18 homicides. In 2009, the number decreased to 13, but has risen every year since.

“We always try to reduce crime, we do a lot of things and we've got a lot of functions in place as we have this year and we're going to roll into next year with the same programs,” says Boren.

Chief Boren hopes they can hire more patrol officers. He says there are some vacancies that need to be filled. More officers will reduce response time, and cut down on certain crimes, but one of the challenges the department faces, is doing this while working within city budget limitations.

Council and the mayor have always been good to us when it comes to money and hiring entry-level patrol officers, they've always been real good. If we can find the people for the positions, they normally find the money,” says Boren.

Chief Boren also compared Columbus' murder rate to Montgomery, a city with a similar population. Montgomery has 46 murders, which is more than twice the amount Columbus has this year.

6 of the 22 murders this year remain unsolved. Columbus police cleared all 17 murders in 2012.

Click here to view an interactive map of the 22 Columbus murders in 2013.

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