Montgomery Homicide Rate Compared to Years Past


By Ellis Eskew

Crime tape... police lights... and a dead body.
It's all too common in Montgomery.  At least two have been related to gang activity.
However, Police Chief Kevin Murphy does not call it a problem.

 "If we weren't making arrests or not aware of who they are, I think we'd have a problem. The fact is, we know the participants. We're actively making arrests and we are going to bring them before the courts. If we weren't doing that, I'd say we have a problem," said Murphy.

While Murphy says gangs aren't always involved, other common factors... are a low economic status and little education. 
State Representative Alvin Holmes says there are other factors as well.

"The common cause of the crime now is centered around two issues... the high unemployment rate and centered around drugs. We need to eradicate that as much as possible," said Holmes.

Montogmery's homicide rate has fluctuated over the years.
With 1977 being the highest year on record with 55.
In 2003, was the lowest year with 18.
2007 it was back up to 46.
Now, there are 42 so far in 2013.

Murphy says he wishes there was a simple solution.

 "We were doing the same initiatives in 2003 when we had a very low homicide rate as we were in 2007 and even present day. Certainly it makes you do a greater focus on the problem when you are having a year like this year."


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