The term "cold case" is defined by Merriam-Webster as "an unsolved criminal investigation (as of a homicide or abduction) that has stopped being actively pursued because of a lack of evidence". But many people don't need to be told the definition.

That's because the concept of "cold case" files has been a major centerpiece of documentaries, movies, and television shows for decades. Including a long-running drama from CBS literally titled "Cold Case". That show ran from 2003 to 2010. But that wasn't where the television hype over cold cases started. In 1999 the network A&E started airing a documentary program called "Cold Case Files". The shows popularity has stayed so high that it is still being produced today.

Police detectives search the scene in the paddock
Photo by Simon Baker/Getty Images

The uncomfortable reality of these shows is that the concept of cold cases is based in reality. Especially for a show like "Cold Case Files" where the documentary style uses real cases for the base of all of their programming.

These cold cases are unfortunately more common than you may expect. Some smaller cities carry large numbers of these cold cases for decades. Including one city in East Texas.

The city of Tyler, Texas has over 20 cold case files that don't seem to have any resolution in sight. These cases include homicides and disappearances. Dating all the way back to the 1970s, these cases have remained unsolved since their investigations started.

See the list of unsolved cold cases that haunt Tyler, Texas here...

Can You Help Solve Any of These 24 East Texas Cold Cases?

Crime is a terrible thing. Luckily, we've got a dedicated group of police officers and investigators that work around to the clock to bring those responsible for breaking the law to justice. Unfortunately, not every case is closed. Authorities in East Texas are hoping that someone might have a key piece of information that could help them crack these 24 cold cases wide open. If you know anything, please reach out to the Tyler Police Department at 903-531-1000, or Tyler Smith County Crime-Stoppers at 903-597-2833.

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