TBI report shows many families in Memphis must wait for justice

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A new report shows Memphis has a lot of work to do when it comes to violent crimes like homicide.

That’s not the case statewide, as violent crime took a five percent dip.

One area, especially in cases where suspects are arrested.

The TBI report says many families in Memphis also must wait for justice.

The TBI report says the clearance rate for homicides last year was about just over 30 percent, which means seven out of ten families are still waiting for their loved ones’ accused killer to be caught.

Rosemary Williams has some sense of closure. Police have arrested one suspect in the murder of her nephew Demetrius Robinson, a Whitehaven High School football player.

Robinson was shot and killed last September.

“I miss him,” she said. “I miss him a whole lot. The whole family misses him.”

According to the 2020 Crime in Tennessee Annual Report, Memphis Police only cleared 90 out of the 290 murder cases. It means 31 percent of murder cases last year were cleared.

FOX13 showed the report to retired Shelby County Deputy and analyst Mike Collins.

“The number that jumps out to me is the number of cases not cleared,” Collins said. “There are two hundred cases uncleared cases out there that need some closure as it relates to their families.”

Collins says he believes MPD should post better numbers this year because it recently promoted patrolman to the rank of sergeant detective to increase manpower at the bureaus such as homicide.

The TBI report was released just days after Mayor Strickland released his new crime-fighting initiative.

Memphis also has a new police chief building new relationships for community involvement.

“Because policing can’t do it all. You have to have the community engaged,” said Collins.

Rosemary Williams believes her nephew’s killer was caught thanks to good old-fashioned police work.

To the families still waiting to hear that arrest has been made in their case, Williams gave this advice.

“You just have to have patience for God to work. You just have to have patience for God to work,” she said.

FOX13 emailed MPD for a response and was told the department is crunching the numbers from the TBI report and will have a response. Check back for that update.

CLICK HERE for a link to the full TBI report.