FBI report shows homicides were up statewide in 2020

“I think the pandemic certainly has increased not only crime rates in general but, definitely homicides,”
Published: Sep. 29, 2021 at 11:01 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The FBI came out with their 2020 crime stats report this week. Nationwide, homicides were up 30% from 2019, which is the largest one year jump ever. Alabama was no exception.

Local Homicide Survivor Program Director Kim Crawford gives counseling to those who lose a loved one to homicide. She says she has seen the increase first hand.

“I think the pandemic certainly has probably increased not only crime rates in general but, definitely homicide with an increase in depression, and an increase in anxiety, and financial struggles,” said Crawford.

Crawford says homicide is a trickle down.

“People are desperate and do desperate things, and homicide unfortunately has been kind of a catch all for that,” said Crawford.

Decatur Police Chief Nate Allen says he’s seen an increase in domestic violence homicides and crime.

“People are staying in, close to one another. I think they get on each other’s nerves and I think it creates kind of a hostile area which people lash out at one another,” said Allen.

Crawford agrees.

“People are at home because of jobs, kids are at home, substance abuse has gone up so, that has a potential to increase domestic violence,” said Crawford.

Crawford says those who lose someone to homicide, are really struggling with all of this.

“Not only having to deal with their own grief with their own homicides in their own life, but they’re re-traumatized or re-victimized too with any homicide,” said Crawford.

Crawford says overall, she’s had a lot more clients. She says the fact that a lot of trials have been delayed due to the pandemic makes things even worse.

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