Usually considered the most violent weekend of the year in Dallas, Fourth of July weekend saw fewer gun incidents in 2022, police said.
Last year, the city recorded 10 shootings and four deaths due to gun violence over the holiday weekend. However, this year, WFAA reports that Police Chief Eddie Garcia said no lives were lost to gunfire this weekend.
“We had 25 fewer shootings this weekend than we had last year,” he said.
The police chief attributed the record to the sacrifice of officers.
“What happened over the weekend was not an accident,” he said. “It was not luck. It was because hardworking men and women sacrificed their family time, sacrificed their Fourth of July to do the best for this city.”
The Dallas PD brought in more officers on overtime and concentrated patrols in violence-prone areas. According to Garcia, some vacations were canceled.
Based on what the department achieved this past weekend, Garcia is convinced that the city’s crime level could be considerably reduced if that kind of manpower was deployed every weekend.
”No question that with more resources, we can move the needle even further than we have done here,” he said.
The police chief said the department is stretched too thin with its 3,081 sworn officers, estimating that it would need about 3,500 officers to maintain last weekend’s level of police presence.
Garcia emphasized that the department is focused on taking illegal firearms and violent criminals off the street but said the community’s support is needed.
Violence interrupters like Butler go to violent areas in the city to speak with and mentor community members in the hopes of discouraging crime.
“We need to come together to get involved,” Butler said. ”We know exactly where the violent crime is going to begin before it even happens, but yet we still stay silent, and silence is condoning violence. We have to speak up.”