Lead Stories

U.S.
4:37 am
Mon March 30, 2015

Open Cases: Why One-Third of Murders In America Go Unresolved

Det. Mark Williams (center), speaks with an officer in Fairfield Court in Richmond, Va. A decade ago, amid a surge in violent crime, police were identifying relatively few murder suspects. So the police department refocused its efforts to bring up its "clearance rate."
Alex Matzke for NPR

If you're murdered in America, there's a one-in-three chance the police won't identify your killer.

To use the FBI's terminology, the national "clearance rate" for homicide today is 64.1 percent. Fifty years ago, it was more than 90 percent.

And that's worse than it sounds, because "clearance" doesn't equal conviction: it's just the term police use to describe cases that end with an arrest, or in which a culprit is otherwise identified without the possibility of arrest — if the suspect has died, for example.

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U.S.
4:12 am
Mon March 30, 2015

How Many Crimes Do Your Police 'Clear'? Now You Can Find Out

Violent crime in America has been falling for two decades. That's the good news. The bad news is, when crimes occur, they mostly go unpunished.

In fact, for most major crimes, police don't even make an arrest or identify a suspect. That's what police call "clearing" a crime; the "clearance rate" is the percentage of offenses cleared.

In 2013, the national clearance rate for homicide was 64 percent, and it's far lower for other violent offenses and property crimes.

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NPR Story
4:04 am
Mon March 30, 2015

Politics In The News

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR Story
4:04 am
Mon March 30, 2015

2 Congressional Panels Probe Opiate Prescriptions At Wis. VA Hospital

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Code Switch
4:04 am
Mon March 30, 2015

In New York's Multinational Astoria, Diversity Is Key to Harmony

At an English-as-a-Second-Language class at Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens, students practice their English. Their teacher leads them in a rendition of Eric Clapton's "Wonderful Night."
Alexandra Starr

Queens, N.Y., is one of the most diverse urban spaces in the world, and one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Queens is Astoria, across the East River from upper Manhattan.

Astoria has a reputation as New York City's Greektown, but it's more like an urban United Nations. People from nearly 100 countries live there, according to census data.

They coexist pretty peacefully, but that wasn't always the case. The explosion of diversity has helped foster a more tranquil community.

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