PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia police are turning to the internet to help solve unsolved murders. It’s a new step by the Philadelphia Police Department that they hope will bring justice for families of victims who never received closure.
Police launched Philly Unsolved Murders on Thursday. Authorities say about 88 of those unsolved murders were from this year alone, which is about half of the murders.
One of the murders happened in Hunting Park back in January. Family members say the website will help bring them a little bit of closure.
“I believe this website is going to be an asset, a real asset in helping us locate who killed my baby,” said Kimberly Robinson, whose son was killed by gunfire.
Who killed Jonchristopher Savage? He was 34 years old and is listed as the first cold case on PhillyUnsolvedMurders.com.
“I need his killer caught. I forgive his killer — if you’re out there and you hear me, I forgive you,” Robinson said. “But I need you to come to justice and pay for what you did.”
Savage was an only child and a preacher. He also graduated from culinary school.
The victims’ stories are part of the website as well to humanize the victims.
Andrew James Moss-Brown’s murder is also unsolved. He was killed June 21 on the 3000 block of North Darien Street. His family believes his death was a case of mistaken identity.
Wearing his son’s ashes around his neck, the thought of not seeing his son anymore nearly brings his father to tears.
“I look for him. We had a ritual. He come home from work, he would come around the corner and speak,” Richard Brown said. “I don’t see him come around the corner no more.”
On the website, people can read about the cases — and submit a tip if they choose to.
Acting Philadelphia Police Commissioner Christine Coulter says solving the murders is as much for the families as it is for the criminals.
“If someone commits a murder, they’re out there, odds are they feel that there is no actions for what they did,” Coulter said.
The department said many homicides are solved within two weeks.
They said after all witnesses have been interviewed, crime scenes have been surveyed and they still have nothing, that’s when the pictures will be added to the site.