Crime Trackers

Jan 10, 2009 3:49 AM

30 homicides still unsolved

2008 was a deadly year in the City of Tucson. Homicide detectives investigated 74 homicides. Of those murders the four were ruled justifiable homicides, leaving investigators with 70 criminal cases.

40 of those have been solved, which leaves 30 more unsolved murder cases.

Detective Lisa Miller is one of two investigators who recently joined the homicide unit to help with the case load. She is working on two cases, among them the city's 61st victim Willard Foster found in this East Side home on Oct. 27th.

"We're looking for anyone who might have information about what happened and how he was murdered," says Miller.

After the holidays the number of homicides slowed down giving investigators time to catch up.

"We use this time to actively work open investigations that need additional follow up. Or maybe just by going out there and hitting the pavement talking to people learning new details that might help us solve that crime," says Miller.

So the question is why the spike in homcides. Interim Police Chief Kermit Miller suspects the violence in Mexico could be spilling over.

"Just intuitively we know some of that has to spill over. We're such an important part of the transportation corridor primarily related to the marijuana trade," says Kermit.

Chief Kermit Miller says of last year's murders close to half were related to drugs or gangs.

Because the homicide rate was so high in 2008, Chief Kermit Miller is committed to having more officers patroling the streets.

"The citizens of this community have the right to expect us to do whatever is necessary to provide the level of security they deserve," says Chief Kermit Miller.

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