Called the live music capital of North Texas and home to many local artists as well as the go-to nightlife scene in Dallas, Deep Ellum is a neighborhood full of life and culture that hosts multiple events throughout the year.
However, the neighborhood is experiencing a deadly crime wave along with the rest of the city, with one of the most recent crimes, the shooting death of a 20-year-old man who was found lying motionless on the street near Malcolm X Boulevard and Commerce Street.
The shooting occurred just after 1:15 a.m., in the 2800 block of Clover Street.
Dallas police officers were flagged down at the intersection and found the victim with multiple gunshot wounds.
He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead. It marks the fourth murder in the neighborhood this year.
The Dallas Police Department has been working with the neighborhood association to increase safety all year and has developed a plan to improve safety.
The Dallas Police Department will establish a dedicated unit working out of Deep Ellum this fall. Deep Ellum is also located in the Central Patrol Division for Dallas police, comprised of multiple neighborhoods.
“I think an added police presence could be a good thing if it helps the neighborhood,” said Tom, owner of DopeStreetShoes, in an interview with The Dallas Express.
Deep Ellum is home to multiple businesses and shops and hosts quite a few street vendors when the neighborhood hosts events.
Crime is virtually non-existent during the day, with police presence more visible and the neighborhood bustling with tourists eager to check out the cultural scene, shop, and grab a few drinks at local eateries and bars.
On the other hand, the Deep Ellum nightlife is vastly different, with bars staying open until 2 a.m., patrons becoming inebriated often, and arguments can ensue, sometimes even leading to deadly outcomes.
“It gets a little crazy sometimes,” said Dustin Phillips, an employee of Rocket Fizz Soda Pop and Candy Shop.
“I could tell there’s a lot more police here, in the area at least,” said Phillips.
Not all businesses have been optimistic about the plan for a new unit dedicated to Deep Ellum.
“There’s enough police presence in the neighborhood,” said Charlie, manager of Hawkers Asian Street Food.
With an increase in crime in Dallas this year and the fourth murder in the Deep Ellum neighborhood, some local businesses seem split on the effectiveness of a new police unit dedicated to Deep Ellum.
“Deep Ellum residents and business owners are justifiably concerned about their safety these days,” wrote Stephen Moitz in an op-ed piece published by The Dallas Express. “Crime is spiking. … It’s increasingly bleak as the community many have known and loved for years is undergoing a radical and scary transformation.”