For more than two hours on Monday, the Cincinnati's Committee for Public Safety held a hearing in city council chambers discussing the problem of
unsolved crime and cases of multiple witnesses but no suspects.
"We can no longer sweep any of this under the
rug," said councilman Chris Smitherman. "These stories are incredibly
important because the people that are involved in this life need to see what
this is doing."
Much of Monday's testimony centered on family members left
without a loved one due to a violent crime.
Both Rochelle Colson and Bridget
Smith testified before the committee. Rochelle's son LeBron Billings was shot
in 2008, and Bridget's son Rodney Watkins died of a homicide in 2012. Both
cases remain unsolved despite several witnesses.
"I'm quite sure people want to tell what they know, but
they're just scared. When it's easy to go on a public website and find out who
the witnesses are and it's easy to get information, well, nobody wants to speak
up," said Smith.
On Monday, council members vowed to try and change
"This committee stands unified. Zero tolerance for
murder," said Smitherman.
The Cincinnati Police Department boasts a 68 percent closure rate, as 15 murders have already been solved.