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Kansas City recording lowest homicide count since 1967 amid tweak of anti-violence program

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KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Kansas City is poised to finish 2014 with its lowest number of homicides in nearly five decades.

As of early Dec. 31, the city recorded 76 homicides this year. The last time the murder count was lower was in 1967, when 66 people were killed.

Only 10 years since 1967 have ended with fewer than 100 homicides. Last year, 106 people were murdered in the city.

City law enforcement leaders say a 2-year-old anti-violence program called the Kansas City No Violence Alliance, or NoVA, helped but they caution the city's historically high murder rate is far from under control.

NOVA relies on "focused deterrence," in which police talk to members a criminal network — including those who haven't yet committed serious crimes — about the possible consequences of their actions.

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