Rufus Cyrus' house is filled with pictures of his family. One of his favorites is a portrait of his grandson, 14-year-old Decree Thomas, murdered last summer.
"At a young tender age like that - to be taken away - was very devastating," he said. "We feel it all the time."
Thomas is one of 12 murders from this past year Little Rock police are still working to solve.
"They're pulling resources from everywhere trying to solve the homicides," said Sgt. Cassandra Davis with LRPD.
Since the beginning of the year, police have worked 44 homicides. That's eight more than last year. Sgt. Davis says the number is higher this year because many of these murders were double homicides.
"It takes more than one person to go out and process a scene, to go talk to a witness, to go talk to a potential suspect, there's a lot of things that need to be done - more so than one person can handle," she said.
A tax passed in September, 2011 enabled the police department to hire 50 more officers and alleviate the workload but the officers are still in training and have yet to hit the streets.
"We do need these officers now however, they have to be trained," said Sgt. Davis.
In 2008, Cyrus lost his son, Angelo, to a shooting. To this day police have yet to make an arrest.
He says he can't afford to wait any longer, risking another loved ones loss to violent crime.
"Back in your mind, you never forget," said Cyrus. "You learn how to forgive but it's hard. It's a bitter pill. It's something that you live with every day."
30 officers hired from the tax will complete training and hit the streets in December. Another wave of future officers will begin training the following week.