Twenty seven people were murdered in Durham in 2011. A firearm was used in 22 – or 81 percent – of the killings.
It was also a year marked by a 3 percent increase in violent crime in Durham when, according to preliminary FBI semiannual statistics for 2011, the number of reported violent crimes in the U.S. was declining.
And within the first eight days of 2012, three people were fatally shot in Durham.
"This is a very disturbing trend that we, as a community, should not and cannot accept,” Mayor Bill Bell said during a press conference Friday.
Flanked by Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez and about 15 city and county officials in the Durham County Administration Building, Bell announced strategies to reduce gun violence in Durham. They include, among other steps, hefty bails and working to change legislation to ratchet up penalties for gun crimes.
As part of my short documentary film, I’ve been reviewing data related to Durham homicides. Going into 2011, the three-year (2008-2010) average for homicides was 23. Of the 27 homicides in 2011, 11 victims' cases remain open and 13 have been cleared by arrest. Three victims' cases are classified as inactive or not active due to the death of the offender.
I’ve compiled a year-in-review snapshot, which I offer to raise awareness with the hope that it will spark meaningful conversations (even just one) about what can be done to address and mitigate gun violence. With 27 people killed, hundreds of friends and family members are forever changed by the loss.
The following charts and analysis of Durham homicides in 2011 were created by leanoraminai.com using data from the Durham Police Department and other reports.
Homicides by Month in 2011
Method of Homicides
Race of Victims
Race of Offenders
Gender of Victims
Gender of Offenders
Age of Victims and Offenders
Anyone with information about the unsolved homicide cases from 2011, or other violent crimes, is asked to call Durham CrimeStoppers at (919) 683-1200. CrimeStoppers offers anonymity and cash rewards for information leading to the arrest and indictment of felony crime offenders.