Yakima - The Yakima Police Department achieved a 100% homicide clearance rate this year thanks to their partnerships with the community and other agencies.

Captain Jay Seely with the Yakima Police Department said many factors determine whether a crime will be cleared like how quickly officers can get to the scene, how quickly they can identify the crime and secure evidence, how quickly they can assign detectives to the case and how many detectives are on the case.

In a homicide, there are usually three or four detectives but Captain Seely he sends all available detectives then peels them of one by one if they aren't needed.

In the state of Washington, a crime can be cleared in multiple ways. One way is to make an arrest, now that doesn't mean all suspects have to be arrested. A homicide is considered cleared after one arrest.

A homicide can also be exceptionally cleared. To be exceptionally cleared at least one suspect in the crime must be identified, sufficient probable cause must have been developed to support the arrest and prosecution of the offender, the offender’s exact location must be known or there must be a reason outside of law enforcement’s control which prevents the arrest. For example, if the suspect dies or if they are in custody in another jurisdiction. 

Captain Seely said there have been arrests in nine of the 11 homicides and that is because witnesses have been willing to testify and provide video evidence.

"This year has been huge for them, I've talked to more community members that have unfortunately witnessed some crimes but they're willing to stick around and talk to us about it and share their experience and maybe what they witnessed and helped," Seely said.

He believes this is in part because of the growing relationship between the department and the community.

"They trust that if they're going to give us information we're going to do something about it and we're going to hold these people accountable," Seely said.

Another possibility could be people growing tired of all the crime.

"Well I hope so, I hope they are sick of it, we're sick of it too nobody should... look we have 93,000 people within the city, we shouldn't have one homicide, much less 11 homicides," Seely said. "This city is too violent, there's no reason for the violence."

The police department also works closely with the prosecutors office to help solve cases. The Yakima County Prosecutor Joe Brusic said his office has a 24 hour prosecutor on call and they often meet the day of the crime in question or the day after to discuss what evidence is need to prosecute. 

Additionally, the prosecutors office helps with any legal questions detectives may have, help with warrants and much more. 

Seely also said he commends the work patrol units and detectives have done.

"They do a fantastic job for us and I know the chief would echo that," Seely said.

He hopes the public holds YPD and the prosecutor accountable for solving violent crimes but they also continue helping them by coming forward with information. 

There is one way you can help the department solve not only homicides but any crime. If you have a security camera outside your house, you can register it on YPD's website. If a crime happens in your area, the police may contact you and ask to look at your footage. 

Video evidence can be very helpful in a prosecuting crime.

"When a jury sees video evidence of a crime, it's pretty hard to refute that on the defendant's side," Seely said.