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A series examining nearly 100 unsolved murders in the region

Special series seeks justice, change

   There is no greater sin than murder; no crime that pleads so loudly for justice.

   But far too often, those cries are not heard.

   Today, the Daily Times-Call begins a special investigation: " Unsolved : Who's Getting Away With Murder ?" Over the next several weeks, our stories will look at some of the nearly 100 unsolved murders in Boulder, Larimer, Weld and Adams counties.

   The stories are sad ones of hurt and loss, stories tinged by the anger of survivors that those who killed their loved ones remain unpunished.

   The special investigation is not meant to be only a recitation of sorrow and tragedy. The hope is that the series might generate new leads and clues that could lead to arrests and that the Times-Call's examination of how Colorado might better assist police agencies in tracking a killer could lead to important changes.

   A single fact stands out for the team of Daily Times-Call journalists who conducted more than 100 interviews and invested more than a year in the project: The Information Age has not always been kind to law enforcement.

   While computers and the Internet have created a multitude of useful tools for many professional communities that share common interests and goals, tracking murderers remains a lonesome duty.

   There is no Colorado database or clearinghouse that would allow law enforcement agencies to share information and seek leads and clues about unsolved homicides. While the most vicious of killers have no regard for state or county lines, there is no national database that police can turn to for facts and intelligence information that could help put a murderer behind bars.

   While many officers voice support for such a network, others detail the financial, logistical and even legal obstacles to providing officers with such a tool.

   These must be overcome. Murder brings calamity like no other, violently ending lives and eternally haunting the loved ones left to weep in its wake. The danger of killers walking free is urgent those who have killed once often don't hesitate to kill again.

   "For murder , though it have no tongue, will speak with most miraculous organ," says Shakespeare's Prince Hamlet. We need to be listening. An improved network of sharing clues and leads will increase the chances that officers will hear and heed the information that leads to a suspect's arrest.

   Citizens should demand it. Leaders should pursue it.