HPD says 2022 homicide clearance rate best in three years

Houston police says 2022 was the highest homicide clearance rate the department's had in the last three years. 

HPD said homicides in 2022 went down about 8% from the previous year. 

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As of last Friday, December 30, there were 433 homicides year to date, compared to 473 during the same time in 2021 and 400 in 2020.  

Of those homicide cases, 69% were resolved in 2022, compared to 55% in 2021, and 52% in 2020.

Douglas Griffith serves as the President of the Houston Police Officers Union. He said in order to keep the trend, investigators need the public’s help and more officers on the streets.     

"If you see something, you got to let us know, especially these homicide cases. You'll know we'll go into a neighborhood, and they're not going to talk to us, because you know they don't want to be the snitch. But that's the way we gain information, that's the way we clear cases," Griffith said. 

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'We need at least 500 to 800 more officers just to keep up with attrition over the next few years. So that's a lot of where our problem comes from. You only have 5,000 officers for a city this size. That's a real problem. Chicago has 11,000 officers for half the square miles," Griffith continued. 

Until the department’s recruitment numbers improve, his advice to people who want to stay safe in the new year is to remain vigilant.  

"You have to be aware of your surroundings. Make sure no one's following you. Pay attention when you're walking to the car. Stay off your phone. Be aware of what's around you. That helps a lot of because they are going to pick on the weakest link. That's what criminals do. They prey on those that are weak or not paying attention," Griffith said.  

In December, HPD announced it will be offering cadets up to $10,000 in incentive pay to join the department. The bonus will apply to all cadets through June 2024.