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Number of homicide tips to Crimestoppers in St. Louis increased 20 percent in 2020


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    ST. LOUIS, MO (KMOV) — Going into the new year, dozens of the 262 homicides in St. Louis City in 2020 remain unsolved. Part of the problem is a lack of tips from police.

Gloria Shields-Snulligan knows the pain of a case going unsolved all too well. Her son, Darren Thomas, was shot and killed 10 years ago. His killer has still not been caught.

“He was well-loved, respectful, loved school,” said Shields-Snulligan. “I just wish and pray that the person that committed the crime just step up.”

Crimestoppers, the anonymous tip line, said tips increased in 2020.

“I think a little bit of that is the fact that we are sequestered and we are. People are looking for things to do. People are on their devices, their TV, their phones,” said Lisa Pischiotta with Crimestoppers.

Pischiotta said the number of homicide tips made to Crimestoppers increased 20 percent in 2020 with 347 tips in 2020 compared to 281 in 2019.

In 2020, over $50,000 was given out in rewards for tips that led to an arrest.

Last year, the city also approved the Justice for St. Louis Families Fund, which increased the reward amount to $10,000 for information that leads to an arrest of anyone who committed a murder in the city.

The biggest challenge, Pischiotta said, with getting more tips to Crimestoppers, is people thinking they are not truly anonymous.

“No one knows you called. We don’t have caller ID, we don’t have traces on the web or email,” said Pischiotta.

Tips could mean closure for grieving mothers like Gloria.

“Why would you rather see a person suffer, a child growing up without a dad, a mother suffering 10 years plus and wondering just what happened,” said Shields-Snulligan.

You can call Crimestoppers at 1-866-371-8477 or submit an app through the free app, P3tips.

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Article Topic Follows: National-World

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