KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The Kansas City Police Department held its first homicide forum Tuesday night to meet with families who've lost a loved one to murder.
More than 100 friends and relatives of Kansas City, Mo., homicide victims gathered for a presentation from Police Chief Darryl Forte and Mayor Sly James.
It was the first meeting of its kind. Every single detective on the force who wasn't responding to a call made themselves available to give an update on pending investigations.
The forum began with a slideshow of the city's 89 homicide victims of 2012.
"It takes meetings like these to actually put a face with each victim, so they can understand the impact this is happening with the family and our city," Capt. Floyd Mitchell said. "It's times like these where we have to collectively stop and say, 'These aren't just numbers. These are people.'"
Melissa and Victor Turner were in the audience Tuesday night. They lost their brother to a homicide in March.
"It doesn't get any easier, but you can cope with it to a certain extent," Melissa said.
Families were shown what resources are available to help with the grieving process at the forum.
Multiple advocacy organizations both in and outside of the police department presented what services they offer, which provided some comfort to the Turners.
"It's a relief to know that our mayor and our police chief and commission around us is behind us 100 percent," Melissa said.
Everyone in attendance agreed it will take a team effort by the entire community to create any drop in crime.
"The parents, the teachers the mayor, the police officers, every body in one community. That's what makes the community," Melissa said.
Of the 89 homicides of 2012, more than half remain unsolved. Anyone with information is asked to call the Tips Hotline at 816-474-TIPS.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.