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2020 shatters record for most homicides ever in EBR; police say clearance rate is up

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BATON ROUGE - East Baton Rouge Parish has shattered a grim milestone, breaking the record for homicides with the highest number recorded since record-keeping began.

According to East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner Dr. Beau Clark, there have been 125 homicides to date. There have been 92 in the city limits of Baton Rouge, according to police records.

This year, Baton Rouge Police have solved 59 homicides. Not all of those solved crimes occurred this year.

"With these numbers of arrests, we are giving closure to the families that are involved or dealing with the homicide and loss of a loved one," L'Jean McKneely with Baton Rouge Police said.

Mckneely said assistance from the community has been instrumental in solving some of them. More people are picking up the phone and calling police, supplementing their collaborative efforts with other law enforcement partners.

"The members of the community are calling Crimestoppers and are giving us the information we need to put out a warrant," Mckneely said. "We are working with our local partners, state police, sheriffs' office, U.S. Marshals in an effort to make those arrests on those individuals committing crimes."

This week, it was announced that Sherwood Forest connected some of their cameras to the Realtime Crime Center in an attempt to stamp out crime in their area.

The Baton Rouge Police Reserve Program is also continuing. At least eight retired law enforcement officers will volunteer their time in an effort to give back to the community during this trying year.

"We re-instituted our reserve program and those are going to be community members assist us with working these crimes," Mckneely said. "Officers that have since retired, who have that wealth of knowledge will assist us in curbing crimes."

The first meeting with the reserve program is next week. They hope to have them working before the end of the year.

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