Cold Case

Cold Case

Cold Case Investigations

In line with Karyn Hadfield

about Cold Case in the Encyclopedia of Law Enforcement:

Most homicide investigators consider the first 72 hours the most crucial for developing the leads necessary to solve a case. An investigation that lacks viable leads, cooperative witnesses, or physical evidence may be stalled indefinitely. With passing time, these unsolved cases become “cold.” Departmental budget constraints, personnel changes, and the soaring homicide rate have all contributed to the growing number of unsolved cases. Specialized cold case squads have become a popular option for many police departments and prosecutors' offices overwhelmed by large numbers of unsolved cases. Reallocation of resources, focused on the review of these cold files, and advancements in computer technology and DNA analysis have made the resolution of some cold cases possible. The homicide rate progressively increased in the United States of America every year from 1960 through the mid-1990s; the greatest escalation occurred between the mid-1980s and early 1990s.

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