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St Louis Homicides for 2017 Are a 22-Year Record!

Joe Scudder
Written by Joe Scudder

While people chant “black lives matter” and condemn police, for the first time since 1995, St Louis homicides exceed 200 deaths.

The haunting fact about St. Louis homicides is that so many are never solved. Any detective would be rewarded if he was able to clear more cases. But with police pleading for held from “the community,” it seems they cannot penetrate a culture of distrust of, and non-cooperation with, law enforcement.

It is an evil coincidence that the inability to solve these homicides fits with complaints about “mass incarceration” of young black men.

The Saint Louis Post-Dispatch reports, “In a year with 200-plus slayings, most St. Louis victims are black men in unsolved cases.

Daikel Lamont Fletcher […] was gunned down on the fourth day of the new year. Nearly 12 months later, three women trying to escape attackers in a home invasion were shot dead in a car early Friday.

That triple murder pushed the annual homicide count to 203, the most the city has seen in a single year since 1995, when there were 204 victims. (The city’s population in 1995 was about 50,000 more than what it is today.)

[…]

Most of the victims were in their 20s, though eight were 16 or younger and four were 60 or older. Nearly all, 165, were black males. The remaining victims were: 25 black females, 10 white males, two white females and one Hispanic male. And nearly all died in shootings.

And just as in Fletcher’s case, most of the murders remain unsolved. Fletcher’s case is, in many respects, representative of the kind of homicides police in St. Louis are struggling to solve in 2017.

Fletcher, 22, of Northwoods, was shot multiple times on Jan. 4 in the 3200 block of Dodier Street. Residents heard the gunshots and called police. Officers found Fletcher unconscious in the backyard of a residence. He died at the scene.

[…]

All over his Facebook page, Fletcher can be seen in old videos singing lyrics to rap songs, flashing gang signs and, at times, posing with handguns or pointing the weapon at a videographer. In one photo he holds five handguns.

[…]

Last week, the city of St. Louis said about 35 percent of its homicides this year had been solved. By comparison, the clearance rate nationally for murder is about 60 percent.

Of course, the story doesn’t mention Ferguson, Black Lives Matter, or “hands up, don’t shoot.”

Read the entire Post-Dispatch story.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

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