Homicide record broken in Louisville with 2 slayings, including a teenager killed on Thanksgiving Day

Louisville has seen 175 homicides in 2021, surpassing a record set in 2020.

November 26, 2021, 12:20 PM

Two people were gunned down, including a 15-year-old boy, on Thanksgiving morning in Louisville.

The city of 600,000 residents saw its 174th and 175th homicides of the year in a span of six hours, breaking the all-time record of 173 set in 2020, according to Louisville Police Department crime statistics.

Louisville eclipsed its deadliest year in the same week that Milwaukee, Wisconsin, (183 homicides) and Columbus, Ohio, (178 homicides), surpassed annual records.

Philadelphia recorded its 500th homicide on Wednesday, tying an all-time high set in 1990 with more than a month yet to go in the year. This week, Washington, D.C., police also investigated its 200th homicide of the year, the most to occur in the nation's capital in 18 years.

"This is not a livable way for kids to grow and thrive and grow into their dreams and ambitions," Christopher 2X, a Louisville community activist who runs Game Changers, a nonprofit dedicated to helping vulnerable youth in the city, told ABC affiliate station WHAS in Louisville.

PHOTO: Stock photo of a crime scene.
STOCK PHOTO/Getty Images

The latest homicide in Louisville unfolded around 2:30 a.m. on Thanksgiving. A 15-year-old boy, identified as Cortez Duncan Jr. by the Jefferson County Coroner's Office, was suffering from multiple gunshot wounds in the Shawnee neighborhood in west Louisville when police found him, according to Dwight Mitchell, a spokesperson for the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department.

Mitchell said the boy was taken to University Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

A second 15-year-old boy with bullet wounds was discovered two blocks away in the Chickasaw neighborhood and taken to a hospital in critical condition, Mitchell said. He said investigators suspect the two teenagers were shot in the same incident. No arrests had been made as of Friday afternoon.

Around 9 p.m. Wednesday, a 48-year-old man, identified by the coroner's office as Desmond Lamont Bell of Louisville, was found shot dead in a car in the Highview neighborhood in the northeast section of the city, police said. No suspects have been arrested.

Of the 175 homicide victims this year, about 75% were Black, according to an analysis of the police data by the Louisville Courier Journal.