KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Knoxville Police Department has released the homicide data for 2022, revealing nearly half of their homicide cases from last year remain open.
Last year, Knoxville Police worked 35 homicides, including a case where two individuals were killed at the same home. 17 of the cases are listed as “Not Cleared” in the status column. According to a spokesperson from Knoxville Police, “Not Cleared” means an arrest has not been made or it has not been closed by other means.
The report also uses the labels “Cleared by Arrest” and “Exceptional Clearance.” The data shows that 15 cases were cleared by arrest, and 3 had exceptional clearance. Knoxville Police says “Cleared by Arrest” means an arrest has been made in the case, and “Exceptional Clearance” means the case was closed because the offender died or the District Attorney’s office declines to prosecute the case.
Earlier this year, Knoxville Police announced organization changes, which re-established the Central District. The change also formed a Homicide Unit, which is responsible for investigating all homicides, suspicious deaths, suicides, non-fatal shootings with a victim and any assault in which the victim suffers potentially life-threatening injuries. Less than a month after the unit was formed, investigators closed a 1984 murder case.
Knoxville Police also released the locations of where the homicides happened, and most appear to have happened in more central areas of Knoxville, east of Highway 640. Three happened south of the Tennessee River, three happened in the far west areas of Knoxville, and one happened in North Knoxville between the Whittle Springs and Fountain City neighborhoods.
The data also shows that most of the people killed died from gunshot wounds. Three were not reported as shot: two listed methods of beating or blunt force and a third listed that it was a stabbing. Of the 35 people killed in a homicide, 22 were found dead at the scene. 11 were taken to the hospital, where four were pronounced dead and seven died later.
Some notes about victims were less common. According to the report, two were found and later died, but it was not listed if they were taken to a hospital. One case note also listed that a woman and her unborn baby were pronounced dead at a hospital.
A majority of those killed in homicides were black males according to the data. 21 of the victims were black males, 10 were white males, three were black females, and one was a white female. Notably, nine of the cases with single suspects and four with multiple suspects listed demographic information as unknown.