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TN Politics: Curfews, Cops, Cameras? What Does Memphis Need to Curb Crime?

When Mayor Jim Strickland addressed the Memphis Rotary Club this week, he was pressed by reporters on whether the city bears some responsibility in failing to adequately investigate a rape allegation a year ago.

The suspect had a year of freedom as a rape kit sat untested at the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation's crime lab. The same man is now suspected of the murder of Eliza Fletcher, a woman abducted from the street during a morning jog.

Political analyst Otis Sanford says a new lawsuit by Alicia Franklin, the victim of the previous rape, has made Strickland reticent to speak about potential flaws in the police investigation.

Also this week, the Memphis City Council has been looking at ways to curb juvenile crime. One option is to enforce a citywide curfew that state law allowed in 1995. Sanford says that rounding up teenagers may be cost prohibitive. The real problem, he says, starts in homes where teenagers are not receiving parental support.

Reporting from the gates of Graceland to the balcony of the Lorraine Motel, Christopher has covered Memphis news, arts, culture and politics for more than 20 years in print and on the radio. He is currently WKNO's News Director and Senior Producer at the University of Memphis' Institute for Public Service Reporting. Join his conversations about the Memphis arts scene on the WKNO Culture Desk Facebook page.