Opinion: Dallas Has a Crime Problem

crime scene
Crime scene | Image by Prath

The single most important job of the government is to ensure the safety of the public and their property. Any efforts to develop good schools, build strong infrastructure, and provide solid public services and recreational amenities are, in comparison, immensely less important than a serious and effective crime prevention and reduction strategy. While better infrastructure and schools are surely important, these investments will never reach their true potential unless the people are safe and their property is secure.

When the streets are no longer safe, businesses relocate, residents move away, schools begin to collapse and the neighborhoods that were once thriving, beautiful places to live become hollow shells of their better pasts. Unfortunately, Dallas could be the next great city to experience such a fate if the escalation in crime is not addressed quickly.

For example, it is useful to examine another once great city that now suffers terribly from leadership failing to prioritize and address crime: Chicago. In the last several months, many large companies, along with their employees, have announced that they are relocating their headquarters out of the Chicago area. One of which, the investment firm Citadel, cited growing crime as the primary reason for the relocation. When city leadership fails to address fatal shootings, violent armed robberies, and car jackings, businesses and residents leave. Economic activity, tax revenues, and irreplicable culture leaves with them as well. Unchecked rise in crime is the death knell of the American City.

Unfortunately, Dallas has been following in Chicago’s footsteps. As of now, Dallas has a total crime rate that is 83% higher than the national average, and a violent crime rate that is 118% higher. One in every twenty-four Dallas residents will become a victim of crime, and year-over- year, crime has increased by 3%. There have been more than 144 murders in Dallas so far this year, eighteen more than there was this time last year. These numbers should concern any resident in Dallas, and if left unaddressed, will further the decline the city has already been experiencing.

Dallas must do two things: First, there must be trained personnel in and around Dallas whose purpose is to enforce safety, prevent crime, and maintain security. It is up to the city leaders to support the police, and other first responders, in an effective manner that will allow them to bring down crime and save Dallas from the same grim fate that is becoming all too real in Chicago. The Dallas City Council needs to make sure that the city budget will allocate enough funds to the police department, especially since we currently still have a massive deficit of officers.

Second, we need to stop the insanity of “soft on crime” in the District Attorney’s office. A great example of how the current D.A. John Creuzot is hurting the city is the decision not to prosecute theft under $750. Creuzot must end his radical “catch and release” policy that has allowed

criminals caught by the police to be released without prosecution, only to commit more crime the next day. So long as they are not fleecing Dallas residents for more than $750 that is!

It is not too late for Dallas to turn this around, but residents must step up and demand better from the leaders representing them. Their job is to support and advance the needs of their constituents, the residents of Dallas, and lately that has not been the case. This must change before Dallas becomes the new Chicago.

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  1. Jock Hughes

    Rents are so high I had to move out of Dallas. I found low rent in the high crime districts. Maybe criminal activity prevents gentrificacation. My cat Darby would be alive if there was more crime.

  2. Marty

    Left Dallas because of crime.


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