Watch almost any crime drama on TV today, and it might seem like cops always get the bad guy within the hour. But we all know that’s not true, and the scale on which it isn’t true is a little mind-blowing.
According to the US Department of Justice, the closure rate on 2017 murder cases was only at 62 percent. The rest went unsolved, and that’s all contributing to an ever-growing number of cold cases. They estimate that across the US, there’s somewhere around 250,000 unsolved murder cases that are still open. That’s going up all the time, and law enforcement estimates there’s going to be about another 6,000 added to that number every year. It’s a huge deal: according to Tom McAndrew, a former Pennsylvania State Trooper, “… all unsolved homicides potentially have offenders who have never been apprehended. History and research show that a violent offender will likely repeat.”
Advances in DNA technology mean that there is a chance that some of these offenders will be caught. Take the Golden State Killer, a serial killer linked to crimes that spanned decades. He started killing in 1976, and was only identified and arrested in 2018. The good news is that there is hope we’ll see justice for the victims and their families, so let’s talk about some of the most prolific serial killers still out there.