Charlotte Homicide Rate Growing – A Stark Reminder

Recent news reports from Charlotte, North Carolina’s largest city announced alarming news: violent crime in the city – specifically homicides – are on pace to reach a 25 year high.

While overall violent crime numbers have remained flat, there has been a record-breaking 73 murders so far this year. Law enforcement is speaking out to the community trying to curb this horrific trend, and are seeking reasons for the spike.

One of the observations, sadly, is that more than half of the victims know the person who kills them – 17 have been specifically classified by the Charlotte police as domestic in nature. Half of those involved romantic relationships and the rest were among people closely connected like in-laws or other family members.

And what makes this news particularly timely is the overlap of national Domestic Violence Month, observed during October for decades. The observation month encourages people to wear purple on behalf of victims and hold community events to raise awareness of those affected by domestic violence crimes. For North Carolina, this year is a wake-up call with Charlotte’s numbers showing there is a lot of work that needs to be done to free our families and communities from this ongoing scourge.

Marsy’s Law for North Carolina continues to work throughout the state to raise awareness about the need to strengthen rights for victims, including those who have suffered from domestic violence. This data highlights the significant problem hurting our state’s citizens. Victims of all crime, including domestic violence, deserve equal rights as the accused that Marsy’s Law will provide including notification of custody for the accused and victims being heard in the criminal process. These are rights that victims currently do not have in the state constitution.

This law will not solve every problem regarding crime or domestic violence but it is an important step forward on behalf of victims – giving them the dignity and respect they deserve. And it is an important step forward on behalf of the 73 Charlotte homicide victims and the loved ones they leave behind to grieve.