LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - This decade is now the second deadliest in Louisville’s entire history. That’s ten years of watching the murder rate continue to rise, without curbing the violence.
Night after night you see murder scenes on the news and it begins to blur together. The next thing you know, we've lost 742 people over the past 10 years.
Victim’s advocacy group Game Changers, in partnership with the Pegasus Institute, announced the latest statistics at the Chestnut Street YMCA. Their mission is to show behind the headlines, there’s real heartache.
“Every one of these numbers represents a real individual,” Josh Crawford, the Pegasus Institute’s Director of Criminal Justice Policy said.
More than half of the 742 killed was in the past five years alone.
Rivaled only by the 1970's when the murder rate was over 800.
“Numbers can disassociate from the real pain people experience,”Crawford said.
Real people, real trauma, and this is only a small demonstration of what violence has brought on this city. Only a dozen families out of over 700 were at the announcement.
“We’re actually talking about a whole lot bigger of a number than 742, because each of those victims left behind loved ones, mothers, fathers, siblings, cousins, children, friends,” Dr. Emily Bonistall Postel, the Outreach Director for Marcy’s Law said.
“We're not numbers we're faces and families,” Donna Munoz said. “You don’t just kill that person you've killed a part of all of us.”
The family of Jose Munoz who was killed this year says they haven’t even begun to heal and it affects every single one of them. They say they continue to put salt in their wound because there are so many out there just like them and Jose would have wanted them to help.
“It’s gut wrenching because I know the pain we’re feeling and I imagine all the families,” Munoz said. “You don’t just kill that person you’ve killed a part of all of us.”
The number show the murder rates are only going up and non-fatal shootings are over 2,000 for the decade.“
At the end of the day, the numbers are what they are and there’s no use of trying to evade the truth,” Christopher 2x with Game Changers said. “We have to look at the truth for what it is and try to work on this issue.”
Just last year, Louisville ranked among the top 20 most murderous cities in the country according to the Major Cities Chiefs Association. This comes as the city's police department continues to shrink.