BPD trivia: what does the blue lettering mean?
That's my (temporarily deleted) comment, above. But I'm curious what other people will guess. I actually don't remember for certain (but I'm pretty sure I'm correct).
Almost none of them in blue, so something that's a small percentage of the caseload. Blue for a cold case?
Good guess, but no.
Murdered one of the boys in blue? But I don't see a Baltimore police officer being killed since Troy Chesley in 2007. That can't be it.
Come on, team. Get this one right!
What is the word that comes before everybody's name, same length for everyone? A case number?Maybe someone going to federal prison? Maybe someone from a Most Wanted list?
The word to the left is the H number. It's the two-digit year, followed by the letter "H" (for homicide), followed by whatever number homicide victim that person is for that year. So the 300th person killed in 2015 is designated "15H300."Nobody is getting warm on the blue lettering yet, but I'll at least wait for Peter to offer his guess...
Again, has to be something that sets it apart from the majority of the others. So, if black is a regular clearance, blue for an exceptional clearance?
Almost! But (I believe) some exceptional clearances are written in black. For example, if the detective makes a case against a particular suspect, but then the perp dies before can be arrested, the victim's name just goes black.
A case that has been reopened? A case that was open for years but has been closed this year?
I was totally going for "exceptional clearance." Someone needs to bust open Homicide: Life on the Streets. I'm pretty sure Simon explains it in that book.
Okay, I think I've dragged this out long enough. Blue is for a justifiable homicide. Exceptional clearances, at least as defined by the UCR, just make the name go black. Because the Homicide Unit handles -- or at least used to handle -- all police-involved shootings, the names of people justifiably shot and killed by police officers would be on the board in blue. But any victim killed justifiably (by a citizen acting in self defense, for example) will be listed in blue.
That blue name in the third column appears to be Ryan Martin.
That was fun. Thanks! Next time hopefully I'll get it right.
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