Orlando police say they have solved all 11 murders this year– a rare milestone in a city with about 235,000 people that only a few years ago experienced a record number of homicides, says the Orlando Sentinel. “A 100 percent clearance rate is hard to achieve,” said University of Central Florida criminologist Jay Corzine. “It definitely stands out.”
Though homicide detectives are satisfied with their successes this year, they are cautiously optimistic about the future because murders – and the circumstances that lead up to them – are impossible to predict. Meanwhile, detectives are looking into cold cases and having success solving some of them. In 2006, the city had a record 49 homicides. From 2006 through 2009, detectives have investigated 158 homicides and solved 109, leaving 49 cases unsolved. During that time, the clearance rate was about 69 percent. Nationally, the rate is about 63 percent, say FBI data. Homcide Sgt. Richard Lane said police initiatives to crack down on drug dealers and get illegal guns off the streets have played a big role in bringing down violence. Because of those initiatives, drug- and gun-related homicides have dropped. Most of this year’s slayings have been domestic-violence related.