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Dial Down on 911: The Startling Shift in Dallas Police Priorities


Amid increasing demands and a growing crime rate, Dallas police have taken a surprising approach. They’re now telling city residents to stop calling them for a variety of crimes. Instead, as of July 3, they’ve requested residents to visit dallaspolice.net and complete an online form.

This initiative, as stated by Chief Eddie García, is a strategy aimed at reducing the time it takes for the police to attend to high-priority calls, according to the Dallas Morning News. García claims that it’s crucial to consider the stress that officers are under with a constant influx of calls. He believes the new policy can better the working conditions for police officers without sacrificing community service.

García argued that completing the report online would yield the same result as if an officer had taken the call. However, this perspective hasn’t been well-received across the board. Many residents, like East Dallas local Edward Roblez, have voiced concerns about the potential repercussions of this decision. As Roblez points out, stolen items such as guns, credit cards, or jewelry may hold significant risks if not attended to swiftly and professionally.

The Dallas Morning News reports that police will no longer respond to crimes such as shoplifting less than $2,500, non-injury traffic accidents if the vehicles are still functional, vehicle burglaries, and a host of other offenses. 911 calls should only be made for medical emergencies or crimes currently taking place, says García.

But what if residents don’t have internet access? Robert Uribe, Dallas police 911 administrator, has suggested using a phone to report a crime, visiting a police substation, or accessing a public library. While García has claimed that this online reporting initiative has saved 51,000 patrol hours, data shows that response times to top-priority calls have increased.

In the first quarter of this year, the response time to high-priority calls was roughly 10 minutes, up 6.2% from the same period in 2022. Response times for priority-two and priority-three cases were over an hour and a half and nearly ten hours, respectively.

Despite this bold approach, Dallas still faces a shortage of approximately 500 officers, with current sworn officers numbering 3,023, a significant drop from their peak of more than 3,500 officers. This staffing issue occurs against a backdrop of a violent crime rate in Dallas that, in 2021, was double the national average.

The debate about effective policing and maintaining public safety is a critical one. As we observe the situation in Dallas unfold, it becomes apparent that there is a crucial need for thoughtful, conservative policy solutions that respect both law enforcement officers’ wellbeing and public safety concerns. This issue is not merely about response times or online forms—it’s about ensuring that all citizens can rely on effective, responsive public safety when they need it the most. Let’s hope that the lessons we learn from Dallas lead us to better, more sustainable solutions for law enforcement nationwide.

Alexandra Russel
Alexandra Russel
Highly respected journalist and political commentator with over a decade of experience in the industry. Alex was born and raised in Florida, where she developed a passion for writing at a young age, leading her to pursue a degree in journalism from the University of Florida. After graduation, she worked as a political reporter for several local and national publications before being appointed as the chief editor at Conservative Fix.

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