Investigators seeking public's help in unresolved Metro East hom - KMOV.com

Investigators seeking public's help in unresolved Metro East homicides

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St. Clair County State's Attorney Brendan Kelly holding up the photo of a homicide victim from the Metro East. Credit: KMOV St. Clair County State's Attorney Brendan Kelly holding up the photo of a homicide victim from the Metro East. Credit: KMOV
EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (KMOV.com) -

Metro East officials are turning to the public for help solving unsolved murders in East St. Louis.

So far, 34 people have been killed in homicides in East St. Louis, suspects in only eight of those murders have been arrested. The number of homicides in the city has reached a three-year high.

At a press conference on Wednesday, St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly stood at a podium and one-by-one, showed pictures of some of the murder victims. He put a name and a face on the unsolved cases.

Too often, investigators have nothing to go on.

“Some cases there’s no information whatsoever. A person found has been clearly killed but we have absolutely no place to start,” said Kelly.

LaRhonda Nelson’s 17-year-old son was killed two years ago. Her 25-year-old son was killed two months ago. Neither case has been solved. She says she feels the loss every day.

“Nothing’s the same, holidays ain’t the same. Just feel empty and loss… Everybody’s hurt,” said Nelson.

Since 2010, there have been 206 homicides in East St. Louis and the surrounding area. 58 cases have been cleared, or 28 percent.

Elbert Jennings, a sergeant with Illinois State Police, whose brother was killed in an unresolved homicide in 1999, believes it is important for witnesses to come forward.

Investigators acknowledged that some people may be hesitant to call police.

Anyone with tips can anonymously call CrimeStoppers at 1-866-371-8477.

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