LOCAL NEWS

Dozens gather on Utah Capitol steps to honor homicide victims

Sep 25, 2021, 11:49 PM | Updated: Sep 26, 2021, 12:16 am

SALT LAKE CITY — More than 100 people were murdered in Utah last year, which is a record in the state.

On Saturday night, loved ones and advocates gathered on the Capitol steps to honor them.

They come from all walks of life, but they share the same grief — they’ve lost a loved one to homicide.

Darcie Housley’s son, Brian Housley, was killed in a drive-by shooting nearly four years ago.

“We’ll never get over it, the loss of our families,” said Darcie Housley.

It’s why they came together on Saturday, the National Day of Remembrance for Homicide Victims.

“In Utah, we had triple digit homicides for the first time in 2020.We have never gotten that high before,” said Brandon Merrill, executive director of the non-profit, Utah Homicide Survivors.

Sadly, Merrill said this is a growing club, with 103 people murdered in 2020.

“Domestic violence homicides are the top cause of homicides within the state of Utah, and we are higher than the national average. Our national average is about 25% that’s domestic violence related and we are about 45%,” he said.

While Merrill said COVID didn’t necessarily impact the murder rate, it certainly delayed justice, as trial dates and court cases were pushed back.

For example, in Kay Lynn Stafford’s case, the suspect in her son’s murder was released during COVID and his trial was delayed until next summer.

Then, there’s cases like Housley’s, where police have yet to make an arrest.

“There’s been no justice yet, and it just seems like he’s been forgotten,” said Housley. “His case is considered cold in Ogden, Utah.”

But regardless of where everyone is on the path to justice, this is where they’ve found a space of healing.

“Everybody has something to deal with in their lives, but this is a horrendous trauma that you can’t even imagine,” said Housley.

The Utah Homicide Survivors non-profit has been around for three years.

They focus on helping victim family members for the long road ahead, with legal and mental health services.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Players, coaches and management of the now inactive Arizona Coy0tes arrived in Utah on Wednesday mo...

Karah Brackin

Hockey fans turn out at the airport to welcome arrival of new NHL team

Players, coaches and management of the now inactive Arizona Coy0tes arrived in Utah on Wednesday morning ahead of the NHL in Utah party Wednesday afternoon at the Delta Center. 

37 minutes ago

Some Utahns were reunited with their cat after they accidentally shipped it to California with an A...

Eliza Pace

Utahns reunited with pet cat they accidentally shipped with Amazon return

Some Utahns got the surprise of their life when they got a call that their missing cat was found in Los Angeles. 

57 minutes ago

One of two controlled detonations of old dynamite is seen in Holladay on April 24, 2024. (KSL TV)...

Josh Ellis

Crews detonate ‘ancient dynamite’ sticks found in Holladay home

Hazmat crews detonated old explosives that were found in a Salt Lake County home early Wednesday morning after evacuating dozens of nearby houses.

7 hours ago

Summer travel is about to take flight. That means a whole lot of points and miles being used and ea...

Matt Gephardt and Sloan Schrage

Thieves are going after your frequent flier mileage: how you can safeguard those miles and points

Summer travel is about to take flight. That means a whole lot of points and miles being used and earned, and cybercriminals know it.

15 hours ago

One of the tennis courts that used to be available to the public but now closed due to repeated van...

Debbie Worthen

Some Salt Lake high school facilities closed to the public due to irresponsible dog owners

The Granite School District says irresponsible dog owners are forcing the closure of some high school tennis courts that used to be open to the public.

15 hours ago

A fire at an egg farm in Lewiston has resulted in a response from as far as Franklin, Idaho. (Brian...

Dan Rascon

Egg farm catches fire in Lewiston, prompting a fire response from as far as Franklin, Idaho

A four-alarm fire at the Oakdell Egg Farm in Lewiston left scores of chickens dead on Tuesday.

15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Dozens gather on Utah Capitol steps to honor homicide victims