09/15/03 Response to Citizen D
comments: DallasArena.com will never be a chat room, but you are
encouraged to submit meaningful contributions (sometimes responses) on issues
that affect our lives in the DFW area. Partisan debates will not be part
of DallasArena.com, unless Ron Kirk runs for office again.
D is at it again. I want to respond simply because so much of his
opinion is based on misinformation and/or wrong assumptions. As a DPD
officer, I like to hear from citizens to keep me aware of misconceptions and
varied viewpoints in our city. Thanks for supporting a forum on
DallasArena.com for free exchange of ideas and constructive dialogue.
Now, down to business . . . . Citizen D's are comments in red. Mine are in
There is not a nickel's worth of difference in Officer CS's
positions and mine.
First, THANK YOU to Officer CS for clarifying the
number of officers needed. I knew it was off, but I had NO IDEA of
how really bad the ratio shortfall really is -- number of officers to
1,000 citizens. Based on this information, I agree it is a miracle
that Dallas is as safe as it is.
As usual, the council, MisManager, and the "Managed News"
have conspired to make sure basic information citizens need to make a
good decision is kept from us.
I DO NOT think voters are stupid! We would have voted
for tax increases to keep pace with the real costs of running a quality
city IF we had been honestly informed along the way. Now after
years of hiding the truth, we are reluctant to trust anything that comes
out of City Hall.
DallasArena.com readers, please know Officer CS and I are
90% in agreement. As for the 10% where we currently disagree, I
assure you we are 110% committed to making it better.
Thanks for this forum!
I appreciate you voicing your
concerns. I hope to gain your support so together we can achieve our
common goal for a safe and prosperous City of Dallas.
More Comments on Bolton and DPD
"Crime has risen in Dallas because the Council has REFUSED to allow the
chief to hire the additional 70-100 officers that all of the national indexes
say a city the size of Dallas should have at the very minimum!
but your numbers are a little off. In order for the Dallas Police
Department (DPD) to even come close to matching the recommended ratio of
officers to citizens, the DPD would have to increase its size by 1200 to 1500
officers. In other words, the DPD should have 4500 officers, according to
the City Charter. Currently, we have about 2800 officers, and only about
650 of those actually answer calls and work in Patrol.
There are less
than 100 officers in Traffic. Phoenix (roughly the size of
Dallas) has 150 traffic officers on motorcycles. 150 on motorcycles
alone! That is 5 times DPD's motor-jocks. To anyone who will listen,
I've pointed out Dallas could make a huge addition to the budget by hiring
putting more officers in Traffic. One officer can write 50
tickets in a shift. If the average ticket is $50 (modest, but easy on
the math), and the officer works a full month, the income would be
$40,000 a month per officer. That means that an
officer, which costs the City of Dallas $60,000 a year, would bring
$480,000 to the City coffers.
Am I missing something here? A single officer could bring a $420,000 profit to
the City. Aside from income, how about lower insurance premiums and better
air quality for citizens?
Technology helped better track of the reporting part better than ever.
I'm mistaken, nothing has changed in the last 5-10 related to tracking
crime. The numbers are more accessible to the public thanks to the
internet. DPD doesn't track them any differently.
this: 5 people are robbed at gunpoint at the same time by a single
male. 5 robberies? No. DPD reports 1 offense to the
FBI. The other 4 are "no-coded" to the 1st offense.
Although 5 robberies actually occurred, 1 robbery gets reported. As an patrol
officer, I must write 5 offense reports. Seems we should count them all.
some administrative staff got new police cruisers while real cops were forced to
used older and sometimes questionable cars. City
mismanagement lied to taxpayers and kept police cars on the street beyond the
national standard mileage and years, so they could lie to Council (who should
have known better anyway) and claim we could balance the budget at the cost of
the safety of our "protectors". Wow! Not a good decision!
correct you are!! My current squad car has about 72,000 miles. This
is very low in comparison with my fellow patrol officers. My old beat car
had 114,000 miles. This may seem incredibly new to you, but consider
that this car is run about 15 to 16 hours a day - every day. My squad car
is a 2000 model and doesn't accelerate well. The suspension is
questionable and brakes are a joke. Maintenance and parts are done by lowest
bidder. This is the vehicle you see speeding past your family as we
chase down violators. Oh, and we don't dare sit in the car while it's
parked. It tends to explode when hit by distracted or inattentive
Police officers are scarce for neighborhood patrols but plentiful for "OFF
DUTY" assignments in shopping centers, grocery stores and neighborhoods
that can afford to pay double time. . . . But, let's get real! If
our police do not have the time and resources to patrol our not-so-rich
neighborhoods, our parks and maintain a positive and apparent presence, then
THEY DO NOT HAVE THE TIME TO DO EXTRA DUTY WORK! Especially with the
City's uniform, gun, badge and patrol car in many cases! They should use
their own guns and vehicles and were their union T-shirts. Moreover, our
residents and business people ought to be using private security companies until
the DPD is able to give us the "basic" service we pay for in the first
We've been over this ground before, but I'm willing to revisit it. You are
correct in some of your points, but flawed in your assumptions.
- Patrol Officers don't have
time to patrol the neighborhoods, parks and "maintain a positive . . .
presence." We run from call to call to call. If I'm lucky,
the dispatcher will let me make a traffic stop on a questionable vehicle in
route to my call.
At times, the lieutenant over communications will not allow "routine
mark outs" (anything not related to 9-1-1 call answering) until the
calls are answered, i.e. no real police work, no drunk drivers, no
burglars, no car thieves. Just running from one side of the division
to the other in order to quell drunken family squabbles.
I'm not talking about family violence. That's important. Do
you think you should pay me $20/hr to tell a 45 year-old son not to talk
back to his 59 year-old mother because at the ripe old age of 45
he hasn't learned it's her house and her rules. I don't think so.
- What City owned equipment is
used in an extra-job? An over-priced pair of pants and a shirt? I
bought my badge in the way of a $19.97 user fee. I bought my own gun (two
of them). My duty gun cost $985.00, and my back-up cost me
$450.00. The City wanted their issued gun back so they could give it
to a new recruit.
I pay to maintain my own uniforms which rip at the slightest movement.
My duty belt was purchased from my own pocket because the City issued belt
caused back problems. By the way, I've spent over $1200.00 this year
on work related items.
I spend money on my own practice ammunition because the City will not
provide it. Ironically, if I was a horrible shot and failed my pistol
qualification (minimum score of 80% is required), the city would
provide me with one box of ammo each month and all the free coaching on
shooting that I wanted. Sadly, officers who need the extra
practice rarely take advantage of it. I never score less than a
95% on my qualification. Your family is safe with me. Armed suspects
are not safe. But I'll still be paying for my own practice to make
sure of that.
- Extra-jobs that use a squad
car are required to pay the city for the use of the car. (They use
squad cars I wouldn't sell for scrap.) There is no extra-cost to the
city. In fact, the city gets reimbursed for a vehicle which isn't otherwise
- It would be cheaper for
businesses and residents to simply pay a small tax increase than use either
private security companies or pay off-duty police. More money in the coffers
means more officers on the streets. More officers on the streets means lower
response times. Lower response times lead to more active, aggressive patrol
of the neighborhoods. Crime goes down.
- "Basic service." You
are paying for basic service now. Basic service means I spend eight hours
running from call to call. I'm paid the basic rate and don't work less
because of this. I care more and want Dallas to be great again.
I work with some officers who would not be police anywhere else. Their
laziness, ignorance and lack of professionalism would get them fired at any
other department. With the DPD, they are tolerated because they are
desperately needed. Higher pay would bring the best
recruits to Dallas. And keep them here.
Why are we
giving raises to a group of City employees who do not even live in the city
limits? Over 85% of uniformed police and fire officers do not live in
Dallas! That should really bother you as a taxpayer!
Aside from residency not being required, I don't want to live in Dallas. It's
not safe. I do my best to leave Dallas safer than I found it each
day. I also can't afford to live in a decent neighborhood. But
again, we're back to pay.
to the point, over 75% of Dallas voters said NO to the 17% raise that they
demanded after they REFUSED the Council's offer of 5-5-5 over 3 years. Why
did Council go against the voters' mandate and offer any raise at all --
especially in light of budget shortfalls?
the pay raise, the quality of recruits would be even lower. Derrick Evans
would be the norm, not a rare exception. There are still too many borderline
"Officer Evans" in the DPD. Until the pay is raised to a
comparable level to surrounding communities, the level of recruits will continue
Bottom line, Bolton is gone and he will be OK. Unfortunately, Dallas will
Dallas is not okay. Bolton made it horrible. The elephant in the living room had
been removed. Four years of his by-products have not. The stench of his
"leadership" is still here. There is still a lot of work to do. Let's
work on that.