Police: Columbus seeing increase in murders, victims being younger

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The city of Columbus is facing a significant spike in homicides so far this year.

CrimeTracker 10 examined the city's murder rates from January through July and found from 2013 to 2016, the number of homicides during that time frame averaged just above 50.

In 2017, the number of murders increased to 75. It's about a 50 percent increase.

That trend continued when CrimeTracker 10 examined the murder rate for victims between the ages of 18-and-21 years old.

In 2013, 13 people in that age group became victims of homicide, compared to seven last year. It's an 85-percent spike.

The Columbus Division of Police says because the majority of homicide victims know their killer, it's difficult to speculate whether the increase in the number of murders means Columbus has become a more dangerous city.

Emma Simms, whose 17-year-old son was shot and killed on East 5th Avenue in July, said she believes Jordan Martin was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Simms told CrimeTracker 10 too many people are trying to solve the conflict with guns and violence.

"He did not deserve to die. He especially didn't deserve to get shot. He was only 17-years old," said Simms.

The teens' murder remains unsolved.

CrimeTracker 10 compared the number of murders in Columbus in 2017 to other cities of similar size in the US. The results place Columbus near the top of the list.

  1. Indianapolis, Indiana 86
  2. Columbus, Ohio 75
  3. Charlotte, North Carolina 50
  4. Fort Worth, Texas 42
  5. San Francisco, California 40
  6. Austin, Texas 18