Witness intimidation stymies police

By Kevin Johnson

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Witnesses to killings and other violent crimes refuse to cooperate in law enforcement investigations with such regularity that their silence is driving down the rate of solved murders throughout the country, police officials say.

In a survey of 76 police agencies released this month by the Police Executive Research Forum, a national police advocacy group, 78% cited a decreased willingness to testify among witnesses, and 45% reported a drop in the rate of solved cases.

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