LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Lexington is nearing a record number of homicides this year.

So far, 26 people have been murdered in Lexington in 2017.

The record number in Lexington currently is 27, which was set in 1999 and matched again in 2001.

Investigators say in most cases, the victims knew the suspects.

Officials also say rising drug use plays a role in the spike in homicides.

"They account for a large percentage of the motivations behind the homicides that we have. Lexington is no different. We have a growing population, we've had a growing population for several years," said Lexington Police Lt. Albert Johnson.

Lexington police say eight of this year's murders are currently unsolved.

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