Dallas Tops 100 Murders in 2019, Town Hall Held

Dallas is in the midst of what some would consider a crime crisis. Mid-year and the city has 104 murders.

"It don't make me feel good, because it could be me," Dallas resident Lawrence Doughty.

Doughty spent his Saturday morning attending a "Dialogue for a Safer Dallas" Town Hall hosted by TX Sen. Royce West (D-Dallas).

Police officials, elected leaders and community members gathered for a chance to discuss crime problems and solutions.

"Talk is cheap," Dallas County Sheriff Marian Brown said. "For us to continue to talk about issues that are happening in here in our city and in our county and us not to do anything – that's cheap."

Sandra Crenshaw was a victim of crime when someone stole her purse after a dark bus ride. While it wasn't a violent crime, it was a violation.

"Let's just be for real," Crenshaw said. "When you have a police force with a low morale you're not going to have that enthusiasm that you need from the police force."

Crenshaw would like to see a larger police presence.

"If you are short officers you are not going to have that presence," she said. "And that presence of a police officer goes a long way."

Chief Renee Hall said she would not "run away" from the fact that the department is down several hundred officers. Hall hopes the community will continue being a large part of the fight against crime.

"It looks like everyone working together. All hands on deck," Hall said. "Making sure you are our eyes, you are our ears. You are also involved in order to ensure that we have a safe city."

Hall hopes find ways to engage the youth of Dallas.

"We've seen an increase in violence by our 14 to 18-year-olds and so giving them an opportunity to have something outside of their idle time," Hall said.

Hall also added that crime is trending down. Murder is down 62% month-to-date.

"We have noticed some decreases in our violent crime, but we know that is not enough to sustain us," she said.

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