WTVM Editorial 12/15/17: Power of witness

(WTVM) - The number of murders in Columbus now stands at 34 and Police Chief Ricky Boren says what we all think: that's too many.

But the city is not just standing on the sidelines as this wave of killings occurs.

The police chief told the audience at Mayor Tomlinson's last "Let's Talk with the Mayor" forum, that his officers are working every day, around the clock to close these cases - no easy task.

That's because witnesses are scarce. It's the old story: dozens hear or see something, and everyone complains about the murder rate, but when police canvas the area for witnesses, no one wants to come forward.

Even so, progress is being made.

Chief Boren told the Mayor's forum that 20 of the 34 murders this year have resulted in arrests and that the investigative work continues.

Most of these murders aren't citizens getting gunned down on the street by strangers.

The killings happen mostly among people who know each other and usually involve drugs, domestic violence or illegal weapons.

We salute the police force for its tireless investigations to bring suspects in these murders to justice.

There are many causes for deadly violence, but one thing is certain - if more witnesses would help police, even anonymously, the killers will be rounded up faster and the dangerous threat to others might be curtailed.

General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to hsteuart@wtvm.com or write to:

WTVM Editorial Committee

1909 Wynnton Road

Columbus, GA 31906

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