Police Director discusses rise in murder rate

At a press conference Monday afternoon, Memphis Police Director Larry Godwin discussed the sudden rise in the Memphis murder rate in the month of July.

The City of Memphis set a record with 23 murders in July, a 77% increase over the 13 homicides in July 2004. Director Godwin said the department can't pinpoint a single reason why this past July's number was so high.

"I think anything could be a contributing factor, he said. "We need to educate our young that this is not the way to handle problems."

So far this year there have been 89 homicides, compared to 67 at this same time last year.

Director Godwin said his staff is preparing an action plan to try to stop this wave of violence, however he admits that success won't be easy. He said the homicide rate could continue to rise before it goes back down.