Fewest homicides in more than 30 years in Birmingham

Last year, Birmingham saw the fewest number of murders since 1977. Many credit the decline to the current police chief.

In 2011, Birmingham recorded 57 homicides. That's less than last year's 62 murders, and much lower than the 109 homicides the city saw in 2006. The most murders occurred in 1991 when 141 people were killed.

While cities all across the country have seen decline in violent crimes, Police Chief A.C. Roper is credited for his efforts to get criminals off the street in Birmingham. Specifically, it appears that efforts to target known criminals, and areas with higher crime rates has been considerably helpful.

The number of homicides in 2011 is the lowest number in more than 30 years. Police officials are encouraged by the numbers, and hope the trend continues into 2012.

Birmingham police officials are also targeting domestic violence. Currently, police in Birmingham are working with the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office to look at domestic violence fatalities to determine if anything different can be done to prevent future deaths.

Although it is encouraging that Birmingham saw fewer homicides than in years past, it is unlikely that 2012 will bring with it zero homicides. For those in Birmingham and other cities across Alabama who are facing serious criminal charges, working with an experienced criminal defense attorney may prove to be beneficial.

A murder conviction brings with it some of the harshest penalties. Because the laws can be very complex, it is important to assemble a strong criminal defense team that can investigate the evidence and fight the charges against an individual.

Source: The Birmingham News, "Killings in Birmingham decreased in 2011," Jeremy Gray, Jan. 1, 2011

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