Measuring murder in the District

In recent years, the District of Columbia has experienced a historic drop in the number of homicides and a concurrent rise in the percentage of cases closed by police. A Washington Post examination of 2,294 homicides shows that even as the numbers improve, a hard residue remains of cases that are difficult to solve and prosecute, mainly involving drugs and retaliation. The study also shows the impact in recent years of an increased focus by D.C. police and the U.S. attorney’s office on cold cases, 199 of which have been closed since 2002 — 99 by arrest and 100 administratively without an arrest, in cases often involving a suspect who is deceased or already incarcerated on other charges, according to police. Return to homicides interactive.

Sources: D.C. police records, D.C. Superior Court records, Washington Post research and analysis | By Todd Lindeman and Ted Mellnik/The Washington Post May 9, 2012
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