Serial Killer Connections Through Cold Cases

Published by the National Institute of Justice, Serial Killer Connections Through Cold Cases discusses cold case investigations and how to better resolve and prioritize cases. In 1965, approximately 80 percent of homicide cases were cleared, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports, but, in 2017, only about 60 percent of homicide cases were resolved. An estimated 250,000 unresolved homicide cases exist in the United States and more than 100,000 have accumulated in the past 20 years alone. In part, limited resources have caused the crisis. Law enforcement agencies are stretched thin and often lack the personnel to adequately work cases as they happen. Cold cases are also difficult investigations, sometimes because of a lack of evidence. If there were easy solutions, resolution would have occurred at the time of the offenses. As time passes, the likelihood of losing case file information, evidence and witnesses increases. The authors discuss specific cold cases and offer recommendations to increase the number of cases solved.

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