Cold case squads around the U.s. are being cut back or eliminated as police departments face tightening budgets and shifting law enforcement priorities, USA Today reports. “I don’t think many of them are going to do it anymore,” said James Adcock of the Henry C. Lee Institute of Forensic Science at the University of New Haven. Federal funding for cold case squads dropped by 40 percent last year, falling to $8.5 million from $14.2 million in 2005, says the National Institute of Justice.
Across the nation, police departments are turning full-time cold case positions into part-time ones, leaving law enforcement experts concerned over the future of the squads and the number of murderers walking the streets. Andy Rosenzweig, a former New York police lieutenant, said about 60 percent of murders go unsolved. Without full-time cold case squads, that leaves thousands of murders unsolved each year. “The people doing the murders didn’t go away. If they did, they’re victimizing another community,” he said. “There needs to be more (cold case units) and they need to be staffed better.”