Visual Journeys of Eric Seals


Picture Story: Detroit Homicide

The city of Detroit might have shed the infamous title of Murder City USA but indiscriminate killings continue to plague the city. Sadly, over 5,000 people have been killed in the city since 1990. In fact, in 2004, Detroiters murdered Detroiters at a rate of about one per day.
In some parts of Detroit death by a gun or a knife is the norm. People ask, “Why is this city slowly killing itself?”

On a late Friday night in June a grandmother finds a shooting victim lying in a pool of blood from a gunshot wound, dying on her porch. The next morning she bleached & washed the blood off her porch before it set.

A worried aunt sought closure in the disappearance of her nephew, she just had a feeling he was dead. Based on tips on the whereabouts of his body, she spent weekends digging in abandoned areas of Detroit & put up flyers asking if others had seen anything suspicious.

On the first day of this series was published in the Detroit Free Press single-copy sales surged more than 10,000 copies. The paper received hundreds of phone calls, emails & letters to the editor about the topic. Readers offered their solutions to fight the soaring murder rate in Detroit. Others asked what they could do to help the city, sadly the solutions never seem to put a dent in Detroit’s murder rate.

Up Next:

Picture Story: Died to Young