The rate of homicides in Denver increased by 51% in 2020 compared to the previous year and has increased by 64% compared to the five-year average. This translates to 95 people killed through violence in 2020 compared with 63 in 2019. Of these 95 homicides, 26 remain open cases.
Unfortunately, Denver is not alone. The Denver Post reports that Colorado Springs, Aurora, and Grand Junction also saw a significant jump in the rate of homicides in 2020.
Rising rates of homicide
Enforcement officers are working hard to find those who committed these crimes and point to increased gang activity as one concern. Other potential factors that contributed to the rise in homicide rates include the restrictions to jail admissions due to the pandemic and changes to bail practices.
Deputy Chief of Police Darin Parker from Aurora has stated that these factors led police to make difficult decisions about booking those charged with crimes or letting them out to reduce the risk of exposure to the virus in jail — potentially impacting crime rates. Because, he stated, “if someone knows they’re not going to be physically taken to jail they’re probably less deterred to commit that crime.”
Could this sentiment lead to an increase in arrests? Police are looking to keep our communities safe and one way to achieve that is to remove those who pose a risk to others off the streets. But what happens when a mistake is made? What happens when the police wrongly believe an innocent individual committed a crime?
When your rights need protecting
That is when the individual needs to advocate for their interests. One of the most important steps in this path towards redemption is likely reaching out to an attorney. Knowing you are innocent is one thing, proving it is quite another. This requires a calculated plan to dissect the steps that led to the arrest and the process used by the prosecution to build the case. A defense attorney can review this and advocate for your interests, searching for a mistake that can help support your innocence.