Wichita homicide investigations surpass 2016
Wichita Police have investigated 36 homicides this year and need your help in 10 cases that remain unsolved.
"We count on the community to come forward and help us with tips in solving these crimes. Very rarely do we come across crime without any witness statements or people coming forward helping us with information," said Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay.
In the last 10 days, there have been seven people murdered across Wichita. This brought the homicide total to 36, while there were 34 homicides in 2016.
"Unfortunately Wichita is not immune from what we're seeing across the nation. I want to remind everybody that last year, homicides in the United States were up 8-percent," said Ramsay.
This past weekend, three men (Somaj Chambers, Daniel Lopez-Silva, and Rolando Holt) were gunned down while meeting friends.
"A lot of it is senseless. We as a community, we shouldn't have those many homicides. WE are thinking the country was getting in a better direction but it's not. It seems to get worse," said Bert Baker, friend of Chambers.
Police said the 36 murders were often tied to drugs and 26 have involved either handguns, rifles or shotguns.
Ramsay said that an overwhelming majority of murder victims know the suspects, thus not random.
"We need the community to get back into what we used to have in the 80s, a conscience of our religion, more morals and ethics. You know, those things play a big role in our lifestyle and I think that's what we lack," said Baker.
The police department is planning to re-centralize some officers to focus on violent crimes next year. A summer project of street officers focusing on violent crimes resulted in 385 cases, 375 arrests, 434 gang contacts, and 101 guns seized.
Anyone with information about these crimes is urged to called police or Crime Stoppers at (316) 267-2111.
2013: 17 homicides
2014: 26 homicides
2015: 31 homicides
2016: 34 homicides