Police Announce New Multi-Agency Cold Case Homicide Team
June 22, 2012 | WMFE - Police chiefs from more than a dozen municipalities gathered with area State Attorney Lawson Lamar and members of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to announce a new cold-case homicide investigation task force. It's designed to work across all jurisdictions in the ninth district, which covers Orange and Osceola Counties.
It’s called the Joint Homicide Investigative Team, or JHIT for short, and it grew out of local police chiefs realizing they all have a similar need – investigators to focus on unsolved murder cases.
There isn’t an official total of cold cases across Orange and Osceola Counties, but in Orlando alone, there are 141 open homicides between now and 1967. Lamar says some of that old evidence will be subjected to new techniques.
“We’re going to be working with DNA. We’re going to be able to do things with hairs and fibers and stains that were never ever thought of back in, 1977, for instance," says Lamar.
Lamar says JHIT is made up of the area’s best homicide investigators through a cooperative effort, and cost no additional money to put together. Although they’ll be based with Orlando PD, they can cross jurisdictional lines and work anywhere their resources are needed with member municipalities.
Current JHIT members include: Apopka Police Department, Belle Isle Police Department, Edgewood Police Department, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Kissimmee Police Department, Maitland Police Department, Oakland Police Department, Ocoee Police Department, Orlando Police Department, St. Cloud Police Department, State Attorney Ninth Judicial Circuit, Windermere Police Department, Winter Garden Police Department and Winter Park Police Department.