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With 53% Of Chicago Homicides Unsolved In 2019, Families Hope For Justice In 2020

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Justice in the New Year - it's what hundreds of Chicagoans want heading into 2020.

And while police their murder clearance rate is the best in nine years, nearly half of those victims' families are still waiting for answers.

CPD Update On 2019 Crime Statistics

Chicago Police Interim Supt. Charlie Beck and other police officials have a year-end update about 2019 crime statistics.

Posted by CBS Chicago on Tuesday, December 31, 2019

CBS 2's Tara Molina dug into the numbers Tuesday night.

"My family, we hope justice is served for not just our family, not just for Angie, but for other families as well."

The Chicago Police Department said 490 people were killed in Chicago this year. But it's so much more than just a number to families across Chicago – such as the Monroy family of Little Village.

"She was loved by everybody," said Steven Monroy.

Angie Monroy, 16, was one of the 490 people killed in the city this year. She was walking home from work when she was shot in the head near 23rd and Rockwell streets.

Police say the shooter was aiming for someone else.

This New Year's Eve, the Monroys were preparing Angie's her favorite meal, meatloaf, as they talked about the goals she had. Angie had wanted to become a firefighter.

The Monroys also kept candles lit, and her memory alive, as they headed into 2020. They hope the year to come brings answers.

"My family, we hope justice is served for not just our family, not just for Angie, but for other families as well," Steven Monroy said.

Angie's murder remains unsolved, like hundreds of others.

At a news conference Tuesday night at the Englewood District police station, Interim Supt. Charlie Beck said the homicide clearance rate was 53% for 2019 to date.

"Although it's not where we want to be, it's much better than where we have been, and it will continue to improve as we move forward," Beck said.

If 53% seems low, check out the past five years – in 2018, it was 45%, in 2017, 36%, and in 2016, 29%.

Beck also said Tuesday night that homicides were down 13 percent this year compared with last year – 74 fewer people in all.

"That's real people who are alive because the City of Chicago has done a better job of protecting its folks," Beck said.

A review of the department's homicide investigation from October called for a "homicide unit" with "specifically trained detectives" a "centralized cold case unit" made up of "top homicide investigators" to increase these numbers.

"I just want the police to do their job correctly, and I hope these crimes don't go unsolved," Steven Monroy said. "because it leaves a blank space for families."

The Police Department has announced plans to reopen the two detective areas cut back in 2012 – in a move they hope will improve their response times and the clearance rate in 2020.

Meanwhile Tuesday night, Beck further said robberies were down 17 percent, burglaries 18 percent, motor vehicle thefts 10 percent, and carjackings 20 percent.

Beck also said a total of 10,800 illegal guns were taken across the street this year – more than Los Angeles and New York combined.

As to the recommendations from the October review on homicide clearances, Beck said, "A number of things are going to occur in the next month or two while I'm here, and one of them will be directly related to those recommendations and I'll leave it at that."

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