Year in Review 2014

Every day Homicide Watch brings you the most up-to-date news available on DC homicides: reporting on new crimes, arrests, court proceedings and more. Now, as 2014 draws to a close, it’s time to look back on what we’ve learned.

This special 2014 Year in Review package features interviews, investigative reports, charts, roundups and more, all exploring this year in D.C. homicides. We also look ahead to what’s in store next year, particularly at DC Superior Court where several high profile murder cases are scheduled for trial in the first weeks of the year.

We Remember: A Letter from Homicide Watch DC

For more than four years, the faces of those killed in the District have circled through the top of Homicide Watch DC. Children, teenagers, adults, the elderly. In photos they smile, or scowl. They’re pictured laughing, looking cool, or sometimes angry. It can be too much to look at. To see who we’ve lost is … Read more →

Q&A: USAO’s Chief of Homicide

As part of our 2014 Year in Review, we’re speaking with those who shape the criminal justice system in the District. Jeffrey Ragsdale is the chief of the homicide section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. He answered our questions below via email: What were the most memorable homicide prosecutions of … Read more →

Funeral Director: The Funeral Process is a Waiting Game

At the age of 28, funeral home owner and director Shaun Reid has been in the funeral industry for over a decade. He has spent much of his life with the dead. “It’s not something the average person wakes up in the morning saying, ‘Oh, I want to be in the funeral world,’” Reid said. … Read more →

MPD Chief Cathy Lanier: Homicide Prevention Is Every Agency’s Responsibility

Five children were killed in the District this year. Three were infants. One, Xavier Lyles, was a toddler. Jonathon Adams was 17 when he was stabbed to death. All died inside of a home or apartment building. “That’s a challenge for police, but it speaks volumes for everybody else,” Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said. … Read more →

Mayor-Elect Bowser: “No resident should expect to live in fear”

A burst of violence in the days before Christmas left six people dead, including one man killed by police, making it one of the most violent periods of 2014. Mayor-elect Muriel Bowser posted an open letter on Facebook to the Petworth community, her current city council ward. Read the full letter below: Read more Read more →

A Look Back on the 21st and Vietnam Cases in 2014

It’s been more than three years since Tyrell Fogle, Isaiah Sheffield and Steven Moore were killed in separate crew-related shootings in Northeast DC. This year their alleged killers were convicted and sentenced, ending a complex multi-defendant case. Six men were charged in 2011 and 2012: Kevin Charles, Johnnie Harris, Anthony Hatton, Stanley Moghalu, Delrico Shuford, … Read more →

Taking the Stand: What it Means for Murder Witnesses in D.C.

When Misty Gibson was subpoenaed to testify in the murder trial against Andre Miles on December 1, she refused to cooperate out of fear for her life. “Your promises don’t mean shit,” she told a prosecutor. When Gibson continued to refuse, Judge John Ramsey Johnson held her in contempt of court. After four days in … Read more →

Ten Unsolved Murders Could Become Cold Cases

Ten unsolved homicides covered on this site could officially become cold cases at the end of 2014, meaning leads have been exhausted and further investigation will move out of MPD’s regular homicide division. Cases that go unsolved for four years are transferred to the Cold Case Unit on a case-by-case basis, according to MPD Spokesman … Read more →

What We Know About DC’s Deadliest Guns

The Glock 17, 9mm semi-automatic pistol is linked to more D.C. homicides in the last six years than any other gun, making it D.C.’s deadliest firearm. According to data from the Department of Forensic Sciences (DFS), 350 firearms have been recovered from homicides since 2009. Semi-automatic pistols were used in homicides more than any other … Read more →

Firearm Recovery 2014: By the Numbers

As part of our 2014 Year in Review series, we analyze a list of firearms recovered in homicide cases from 2009 to December 15, 2014, obtained from a Freedom of Information request filed with the Department of Forensic Sciences. Check out our Year in Review story for more information on firearm recovery and D.C. homicides. … Read more →

Homicide in 2014: By The Numbers

The District of Columbia recorded 108 homicides in 2014, two more than last year. It is the second consecutive year that the number of killings has risen. Three of those cases were ruled justifiable homicide by citizen: Cortez Carter, Michael Hrizuk, and Anthony Cornell Jones. MPD does not count those deaths as murders, meaning its … Read more →

How Those Convicted of Murder are Sentenced in DC

Since launching in 2010, Homicide Watch DC has tracked the cases of 320 people arrested for murder in the District. We track how those cases end in our database, whether in conviction or acquittal. At the end of 2014, 96 suspects are still making their way through the court system. They are awaiting preliminary hearings, … Read more →