Dallas Crime Down By Nearly 10 Percent

Police chief credits additional officers, community support with drop

By Ken Kalthoff
|  Tuesday, Oct 20, 2009  |  Updated 6:45 PM CDT
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Dallas Reports 9.5% Reduction in Crime

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Dallas police say the city's overall crime rate has fallen 9.5 percent so far in 2009 compared with the same period last year.

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Dallas Reports 9.5% Reduction in Crime

Dallas police say the city's overall crime rate fell 9.5 percent so far in 2009 compared with the same period last year.
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Dallas police Tuesday reported an overall crime rate reduction of 9.5 percent so far in 2009 compared with the same period last year.

The drop comes on top of 2008 reductions that moved Dallas out of the worst big city crime rate, a dubious distinction Big D held for many years.

"We have significantly more officers, which I think has been the biggest part," said Chief David Kunkle.

He also credits support from the district attorney’s office and community programs such as crime watch and neighborhood patrols.

"I think it's a combination of everything,” Kunkle said.

Homicide is the only crime currently on the rise, but that is only compared to last year’s extremely low homicide rate, the lowest per capita in recorded Dallas history according to Kunkle.

“We’re competing against very good numbers in homicides, and I think by the end of this year, we’ll be down from where we were a year ago there, also,” Kunkle said.

The numbers, which were presented to the Dallas City Council Public Safety Committee, show the sharpest declines in individual robbery, down 21.1 percent, and business burglary, down 30.5 percent.

Kunkle said he suspects tougher regulation of metal recycling along with a drop in scrap metal prices may have helped reduce the motive for metal theft from businesses.

However, businesses who have been hit by burglars are not as pleased with the numbers.

Early Sunday, two large flat-screen TVs were stolen from the Confusion Asian Cuisine restaurant on Davis Street in Oak Cliff.

“It makes me disappointed that people have to do this to good people, you know, that work for their money,” said hostess Ana Suarez.

It was the third burglary to occur recently at the new restaurant near the Bishop Arts District.

“The area is still dangerous. It hasn’t changed since we’ve been here,” Suarez said.

Kunkle said he agrees there is still plenty of crime-fighting work to do.

“We still have an awful lot of victims, but it is getting better, and it’s gotten better in every part of the city,” he said.

More: Read the crime report

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