Bibb County Sheriff David Davis says there’s been more reluctance this year from people about coming forward with key information that could help solve homicides.
There have been 26 homicides in 2017, which is six higher than last year. On Tuesday, Davis spoke with the Macon-Bibb County Commission about the recent rash of homicides and efforts to solve the cases.
The latest string of homicides includes three people who were killed on Halloween. And on Monday, a 53-year-old man was killed in his Pharr Avenue home.
Twelve of this year’s murders remain unsolved. Davis said his office is looking into why more people are hesitant about providing authorities details about the homicides.
“Maybe as a community we can talk about why that is,” he said. “That’s one of the reasons we have more unsolved homicides this year than we have in the past. Just because we consider it unsolved doesn’t mean we don’t have people we’re looking at: People of interest and some people we’re fairly confident committed these crimes.”
He later added, “Our folks are out there. They’re working but the community can help us by giving us that little piece of information that can help us close the case.”
The county also had a higher number of non-fatal shootings this year, but also more guns have been seized than in 2016. There have been 286 guns seized through October, which is one higher than all of last year.
One suggestion from a commissioner was to show more support for the sheriff’s office outreach initiatives. Commissioner Mallory Jones also mentioned looking at banishing repeat offenders from living in Macon-Bibb County and surrounding counties.
Davis said that Macon’s crime problem isn’t uncommon.
“We can get into a philosophical and theoretical discussion about why we have crime but I will say Macon-Bibb is not alone in this,” he said. “Savannah has some of the same issues, Augusta has some of the same issues, Columbus has some of the same issues.”