Family violence crimes remain on pace with last year despite an overall dip in violent crimes in Dallas.

The Dallas Police Department launched an effort to reduce violent crime three years ago, and its hotspot policing plan appears to be yielding some results. However, offenses categorized as “family violence” continue to be prevalent. The Dallas Express has delved into this discrepancy.

Data from the City’s crime analytics dashboard shows a 17.2% decline in violent crime as of June 6, with 3,740 reports filed this year compared to 4,515 during the same period last year. These criminal offenses include aggravated assault, sexual assault, and murder.

However, crimes flagged by DPD for involving “an act by a member of a family or household against another member that is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm” outnumber violent crime offenses this year.

There have been 5,916 family violence crimes reported as of June 6 — just a few short of the 5,976 reported over the same period in 2023. It is worth noting that an estimated 44% of domestic violence incidents are believed to go unreported, according to the nonprofit Connections for Abused Women and their Children.

In terms of where family violence crimes are being reported the most, here is a rundown of the number of offenses logged per council district, arranged from highest to lowest:

  • D7 (Adam Bazaldua): 670
  • D8 (Tennell Atkins): 642
  • D4 (Carolyn King Arnold): 640
  • D2 (Jesse Moreno): 574
  • D6 (Omar Narvaez): 514
  • D3 (Zarin Gracey): 421
  • D10 (Kathy Stewart): 404
  • D1 (Chad West): 333
  • D5 (Jaime Resendez): 323
  • D12 (Cara Mendelsohn): 316 – up by 26.4%
  • D14 (Paul Ridley): 296 – up by 14.3%
  • D11 (Jaynie Schultz): 292
  • D9 (Paula Blackmon): 267 – up by 6.8%
  • D13 (Gay Donnell Willis): 224 – up by 25.8%

Certain council districts stand out for either logging as many as three times more family violent crime offenses than others (Districts 4, 7, and 8) or for seeing doubt-digit increases in such crimes (Districts 12, 13, and 14).

A more nuanced picture is provided when the rates of family violence crime are calculated per 10,000 residents and then per 10,000 households using City demographic data compiled for 2023.

Of course, DPD data does not show how many people or households were involved in each family violence incident, nor whether the same parties were involved multiple times. Nevertheless, these estimates help provide a rough idea of the scale of domestic violence in each council district.

Here are the approximate rates of residents (per 10,000) by council district impacted by family violence, arranged from highest to lowest:

  • D7 (Adam Bazaldua): 81.74
  • D4 (Carolyn King Arnold): 69.59
  • D8 (Tennell Atkins): 67.23
  • D2 (Jesse Moreno): 53.12
  • D6 (Omar Narvaez): 50.69
  • D3 (Zarin Gracey): 43.17
  • D10 (Kathy Stewart): 40.94
  • D1 (Chad West): 35.99
  • D11 (Jaynie Schultz): 33.37
  • D12 (Cara Mendelsohn): 33.24
  • D5 (Jaime Resendez): 33.16
  • D14 (Paul Ridley): 33.05
  • D9 (Paula Blackmon): 28.19
  • D13 (Gay Donnell Willis):  25.33

Once again, District 7 leads, followed by Districts 4 and 8. Dramatic differences can be seen between the different council districts, for instance, with over three times more residents affected by violence at home in District 7 than in District 13, or roughly twice as many in Districts 4 or 8 as in Districts 5, 11, or 12.

Here are the approximate rates of households (per 10,000) by council district impacted by family violence, arranged from highest to lowest:

  • D7 (Adam Bazaldua): 232.30
  • D8 (Tennell Atkins): 210.75
  • D4 (Carolyn King Arnold): 207.52
  • D6 (Omar Narvaez): 150.45
  • D2 (Jesse Moreno): 119.09
  • D5 (Jaime Resendez): 117.21
  • D1 (Chad West): 103.33
  • D10 (Kathy Stewart): 95.97
  • D3 (Zarin Gracey): 87.34
  • D11 (Jaynie Schultz): 72.57
  • D12 (Cara Mendelsohn): 69.64
  • D9 (Paula Blackmon):  63.88
  • D13 (Gay Donnell Willis): 59.20
  • D14 (Paul Ridley): 54.59

There are few changes in ranking based on the calculations, yet starker differences between the council districts become apparent. Approximately four times more households are impacted by domestic violence in Districts 7, 8, and 4 than in Districts 14 and 13.

Experts say that violence at home has considerable spillover effects on a community, for instance, making children aggressive at school or adults prone to violence outside the home. As previously covered by The Dallas Express, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission rolled out new resources for victims, distributing them amongst law enforcement, campus peace officers, and health care providers late last year.

DPD has had a unit dedicated to domestic violence cases since 1987. It works and trains regularly alongside stakeholders such as Lawyers Against Domestic Violence, the Parkland Hospital Battered Women’s Intervention Project, and various local women’s shelters.

However, DPD has been laboring under a significant officer shortage, with just around 3,000 uniformed officers fielded despite a City report recommending closer to 4,000. Its budget for this fiscal year is $654 million, far less than the spending levels on police seen in other high-crime jurisdictions, further spreading the department’s resources thin.

The Dallas Express, The People’s Paper, believes that important information about the City, such as crime rates and trends, should be easily accessible. According to data from the FBI’s UCR database, Dallas has more crime per capita than hotspots like Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, and New York.

How did your area stack up on crime? Check out our interactive Crime Map to compare all Dallas City Council Districts. Curious how we got our numbers? Check out our methodology page here.