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  • Writer's pictureBrad Parker

Murders Solved at Lowest Rate in 55 Years

Are criminals literally getting away with murder?

Chart showing decline in how many murders are solved in the U.S.
Share of homicides that have been solved by police in the U.S.

According to the FBI's Criminal Justice Information Services, the percentage of homicides that go unsolved is increasing in the United States (CJIS).


As Statista's Anna Fleck explains in the graph above, only 54.4 percent of the nation's homicide cases were successfully resolved in 2020, or an anticipated 9,836 out of 21,570 crimes. This is the most recent data that is available due to data reporting delays.


A case is "cleared" when it has been either solved, in which case the alleged murderer has been apprehended and legally charged, or when it has been designated as a "exception," in which case the perpetrator cannot be apprehended because they are either already dead, are detained elsewhere, or for some other reason.


According to the FBI's 2020 Uniform Crime Report, homicides increased by about 30% in that year, which resulted in an abundance of cases for police and sheriff's departments. This can be partly blamed for the dramatic reduction in 2020.


Remember, this is for 2020! How much worse has the situation become with rising crime rates and decreasing police forces in the last two years?
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