Let’s Make The Mid-South A Safer Place To Live!
We are in a Cold Case Crisis!
For example, since 1980, the city of Memphis has accumulated more than 1,932 unresolved homicides while Nashville has over 1,300 and these numbers are rising each year.
According to the FBI crime data, the USA has accumulated over 262,000 unresolved homicides since 1980. Plus, in 2016, the national average of solving homicides dropped to its lowest ever (59.4%) but rose to 61.6 in 2017. But 4 out of 10 homicides are still not being solved each year. In the meantime:
- the number of cold cases continue to rise;
- justice is not served while some perpetrators continue to commit violent acts;
- families are left without answers;
- faith in our law enforcement is diminished;
- concerns over public safety increase;
- and the cost of these crimes to Memphis is in the hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.
While the numbers continue to rise, Police departments across the country including the Mid-South, are understaffed and are not financially equipped to adequately address the cold case problem. Therefore, the creation of the Mid-South Cold Case Initiative, a non-profit corporation unlike any other in the country, was specifically designed to help raise the funds necessary to augment these departments and provide expertise to support their concerted efforts to investigate and solve these homicides.
The best way to address this problem is to investigate homicides (hot and cold) at both ends of the spectrum, simultaneously. Just working the fresh cases allows the unresolved to increase rapidly, adding more victim families to the list without answers.
Funds donated to the MS-CCI will be utilized to help offset some of the expenses associated with investigating primarily cold cases but will also be selectively used to provide consultations for surviving family members of unsolved homicides. This will include the following:
• Provide expert consultations on how to design, operate and manage a cold case unit.
• Provide funds to conduct expedited (1-2 months) forensic analysis through private certified laboratories. Presently it takes 8-12 months to get DNA results from the State Crime Laboratory.
• Provide funds to increase rewards for information leading to arrest and conviction of perpetrators.
• Provide financial assistance to hire crime analysts that can enhance the cold case process.
• Provide advanced training to both cold case and regular homicide detectives but especially that which addresses the nuances of conducting a cold case investigation.
• Purchase equipment such as computers, software and/or forensic related items that will increase their effectiveness.
• Provide funds to cover expenses of detectives for travel to interview key witnesses.
• And provide forensic and personal consultations for surviving family members.
Please help us make our communities a safer and better place to visit and live while we serve justice and provide the surviving families with answers.
What Can We Do
The research and experiences of others have clearly identified that the best way to address this problem is through a “dedicated” cold case unit. Just working the fresh cases without a properly structured cold case unit allows the unresolved to increase rapidly and go unchecked. And, due to the lack of adequate funds and sufficient manpower of our law enforcement needs assistance from the community, otherwise this issue will continue to get worse.
A “dedicated” unit means that detectives assigned to the cold case unit only work cold cases and are not periodically selected to work other investigations. This is the only way maximum effectiveness can be obtained. Part time cold case units do not solve the problem, they are only a temporary fix.
According to the upcoming Best Practices guide by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) due for publication in July 2019. We cannot afford to wait any longer for these cases to pile up, unresolved.
The cold case crisis is here and working cold cases with a dedicated cold case unit is not a luxury but rather a necessity!
To help the Mid-South and other communities to achieve that goal, the MSCCI will provide pro bono cold case expertise that includes free cold case and homicide training, and will utilize funds donated by concerned citizens to help offset some of the expenses associated with investigating and solving those unresolved homicides (Cold Cases).
The community needs to come together and support our police department by becoming more involved and by donating to the Mid-South Cold Case Initiative which will judiciously administer the funds and ensure they are earmarked to only address cold case endeavors.
This initiative was founded by its President, Jim Adcock, PhD.
• Retired Supervisory Special Agent US Army CID
• Served as Chief Deputy Coroner in Columbia, SC
• Former tenured professor, University of New Haven
• An expert on death investigation and the cold case process
• Trained hundreds of detectives on the cold case process
• Reviewed cases and researched the cold case phenomena
• Published three books, one on Cold Cases, one on Death Investigation, both with 2nd Editions, and third Cold Case Protocol, a handbook on how to design, operate and manage a cold case unit.
• Fellow, American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS)
• Former Vice-President of AAFS and served on Ethics Committee
• Regular guest lecturer at the Dutch Police Academy in The Netherlands
• Served 4 years on the National Institute of Justice’s (NIJ) Cold Case Working Group to develop a Best Practices guide for Implementing and Sustaining a Cold Case Investigation Unit.