ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Following a year of historically high homicide rates, the Albany Police Department is taking a proactive approach to curbing deadly crime.
APD Chief Michael Persley said homicide rates are steady so far this year.
Persley said the department is comparing 2018's numbers to 2016 because last year's rate of 20 plus homicides was an anomaly of sorts.
And the majority of these murder cases last year were cleared by arrest.
Up to now, we've had three homicides in Albany in 2018. Last year at this time Albany had six.
Persley said trying to prevent homicides from happening is challenging because you cannot predict other people's behaviors.
"The number to really have is zero, where you don't want to have any homicides to occur. But we do understand that there are a lot of things that can cause disagreements between people. And we just pray that this year the number is lower," explained Persley.
Now APD is working to find ways to tackle the problem.
Persley said they have billboards across the city reminding people to use words instead of violence.
"When we go out to domestic violence calls or just any kind of initial disagreement, how can we help either mediate or solve the problem before it escalates," said Persley.
Persley said officers also provide services or assistance to anyone who needs it when faced with this type of situation.
And he said the key is reminding people to always talk things out instead of fight things out.