“As for the Jacksonville sheriff’s office, they are obviously overwhelmed because they have to fight these murders practically every other day.”
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On Sunday night, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s office found a man who was shot and killed on Cahoon Road in the Marietta neighborhood. A resident told First Coast News that they heard the gunshots and saw a man in a hood walk away from the scene.
The victim, who later died in hospital, became the city’s 172nd murder victim.
Mark Baughman, a crime and security expert for First Coast News, said the city was on pace for a terrible brand.
“As for the Jacksonville Sheriff’s office, they are obviously overwhelmed because they have to fight these murders practically every other day,” Baughman said.
The 172 murders in 2020 surpass the 158 shootings mark in 2019, and there are still three days left of the year. According to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office murder prosecutor, 139 murders have been committed in Jacksonville, some of which are still outstanding.
Baughman said the resolution rate for murders had dropped below 50%. He believes this trend is due to numerous factors including the COVID-19 pandemic, gang activity and some of the most experienced investigators leaving the department.
“I’m not saying they’re bad investigators, but the more murders you actually investigate, the better you can go about it,” Baughman said. “Not only is it a lack of experience, but you have individuals who refuse to cooperate on a homicide investigation, or they may have a good suspect, but there is not enough forensic evidence from witnesses.” “
The mayor’s office has announced that it will continue to invest in public safety.
However, Baughman said the investment not only combats crime, it takes care of all of the department’s needs.
“There’s a lot more to this than just saying, ‘If we keep pouring money on it, it could help solve the problem,” Baughman said.
Homicide investigators have to balance multiple active and cold cases along with other “detailed responsibilities”.
“It gets a bit daunting or overwhelming for them to bring up everything,” Baughman said. “Again, perhaps a labor shortage, a lack of experience and the level of crime with people who do not solve things civilly.”