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6.6.22 -Press Register — JACKSON

According to research by the Office of the State Auditor, each homicide in Mississippi costs taxpayers between $900,000 and $1.2 million.

Mississippi could save lives and money by increasing funding for law enforcement according to a new report released today by State Auditor Shad White.

 “My office will continue to highlight the cost to taxpayers of the challenges, like violent crime, that we face,” said Auditor White.

According to research by the Office of the State Auditor, each homicide in Mississippi costs taxpayers between $900,000 and $1.2 million. Those costs include crime scene response and cleanup, medical treatment and compensation for the victim, case investigation and prosecution by law enforcement, incarceration for the defendant, and lost tax revenue. These estimates suggest taxpayers likely lost between $136.8 and $182.4 million due to homicides reported in Jackson in 2021 alone.

“Aside from the monetary cost, we also know that every life has value in God’s eyes, and every death due to homicide is a tragedy,” said White. “Now is the time to support the police in our state and put violent criminals in jail and keep them there. If we do not get tough on crime and stop the destructive catch and release problem we have, this report shows how costly it will be to Mississippians.”

The report also shows how Mississippi and Jackson—the state and city with the highest homicide rates in the country—could save precious lives. It is estimated that 100 new police officers on the street could prevent between 6 and 10 homicides per year.

Visit the Auditor’s website under the “Reports” tab to find the full report.

Shad White was appointed the 42nd State Auditor of Mississippi in July 2018 and then won election to the office after establishing a tough, no-nonsense reputation.

In his time as State Auditor, White’s team has stopped the largest public fraud in state history, made the largest civil recovery after an auditor’s investigation in the history of the office, and concluded cases that, collectively, led to hundreds of years of prison sentences for fraudsters.

He holds a certificate in forensic accounting, is a Certified Fraud Examiner, and serves in the military as an officer in the Mississippi National Guard assigned to the 186th Air Wing in Meridian.

The son of an oilfield pumper and public school teacher, White grew up in rural Jones County and went on to earn degrees from Ole Miss, the University of Oxford, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar, and Harvard Law School.

Today he, his wife Rina, and their daughters live in Rankin County and attend St. Richard Church.