02/20/04 Dallas Gangs
Mayor wants to make Dallas a better place. I agree with this,
but it can only happen IF we all put our priorities in order.
A new stadium or bridge will not make this a better city. Our city needs
a major commitment from homeowners and the business
community. Houston, San Antonio and Ft Worth are years ahead of Dallas.
They take care of their
streets, police and fire department. In other words,
they take care of things that make a city work
Thursday, I attended an interesting meeting where the topic was Gangs.
Detective D. M. McLuckie did a great job with her presentation. Below are some
of my notes.
I want to remind you Dallas still does not have a
Police Chief. It is very important for Dallas
taxpayers to get the best Police Chief in the country like when
the DISD Trustees hired Dr. Moses. We need someone
with not only the respect of police officers but also
the respect of the citizens in Dallas. We also need to hire more police
officers. There is no excuse for not having more since Dallas has grown in the
last 10 years. Yet, the size of
the DPD remains what it was 10 years ago. There is something wrong with
1. Gangs write graffiti as a way of communicating with each other
and to advertise. It is their
way to let other gangs know of their presence.
When you see graffiti, call 911 and
then the gang unit at 214/671-4264.
Take a picture of it, and then paint over the
graffiti. It must not be allowed to remain unpainted.
2. Taggers are artists who write on walls but are
not members of gangs. On my way to the meeting, I
noticed an example of this by the Jack in the Box on Marsh Lane. There is SW
Bell phone box that has some writing on it. SW Bell needs to
3. NW/Bachman neighborhoods have at least FOUR different gangs. One is very
violent. An apt mgr. told us they have had several apartments
broken into and this gang leaves behind their gang
name on the walls. New members are taught by older ones who many times are
uncles, brothers, etc. It is a way of life because many come from broken homes
and see the gang as an
4. Apt mgr's are encouraged not to allow them to live in their property. It
is also very important to contact other property managers
so they do not hop around from one location to another. Call 911 if you
notice any suspicious groups gathering
at odd hours of the day or night. Police assign more officers to areas with high
number of 911 calls.
5. DISD Police handle only problems that happen on school property. This is
good because it keeps crime out of the schools. Thomas Jefferson High School on
Walnut Hill has a 2/3 drop out rate. Only 1/3 graduate. What
do these dropouts do? How can they become productive
members of society? We need for churches and business
leaders to offer some type of mentoring program to help these people have better
After the meeting, I spoke briefly to Detective
She told me they are doing all they can with the 10 officers they have
working in the Gang Unit. Dallas needs more officers. Ten full-time Gang Unit
officers is not enough to take care of the entire city.
Dallas may become the most attractive place for gang members that are kicked out
of other city's from around the country.
The area south of my neighborhood
has 60 apartment properties with 10,000 units. Many of the 50,000 people
who live in that area are poor illegals who work hard
for their money and are victims of crime.
It is a known fact they do not report to police
whenever they are victims of crime. The majority carry cash all of the time.
They fear banks so they walk around with hundreds of dollars
and make easy targets for getting cash.
Drive around the city, especially around Bachman and
see what a mess we have. Then ask yourself what
you can do to make things better. Are you going to
continue being the problem by not holding our elected officials accountable
or will you do something?
Mary Lou Montes Zijderveld