LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - We’re taking a closer look at the number of homicides the City of Lubbock has seen so far this year, as that total now eclipses the number from 2019, with seven months left in 2020.
Last year, Lubbock saw 16 homicides, while this year, police have already responded to 19.
Officials tell us that at this time, only one of those cases remains unsolved; and that while the number is concerning, there are several components that factor into it.
“Homicides are specifically a situation in which one person takes the life of another. It can include and does include murders. But, it’s not necessarily only murders, it can also be things like home invasions where the original victim of that home invasion then shot and killed that person coming into their home. It can also include officer involved shootings...and there are a couple of officer involved shootings in that time-period for the year and one of those home invasion situations,” said LPD Public Information Officer, Allison Matherly.
Matherly says many of these homicides show a distinct pattern of illegal activity before turning deadly, “The vast majority of the cases that we do have as homicides are really not random situations. They’re situations where people are already engaging in high-risk activities such as dealing drugs. Or, again, home invasions, things like that.”
While Lubbock is currently averaging a little more than four homicides a month, Matherly says the Police Department wants residents to remember something specific, "The average Lubbock citizen who’s going about their life, not engaging in high-risk behaviors is really not going to find themselves in a situation that is concerning. We’re not seeing random crime across town that’s leading to homicides.”
LPD says while law-abiding citizens do not need to be paranoid, there is something residents can do to help, “Make sure you’re not leaving your guns in your car. Those guns do tend to get stolen and then used in some of these homicides,” added Matherly.
She also says it is LPD’s relationships that will continue to allow them to address these crimes, “So, we have a lot of partnerships with other law enforcement agencies in town. Such as the Lubbock County Sheriff’s office and DPS to come together and to again, look at these different factors to look at these factors that we know are common among these homicides.”
LPD tells us that in addition to not leaving guns in vehicles, residents can also help out by being observant of their surroundings and calling in to the non-emergency line at 806-775-2865, if a situation looks suspicious.