HOUSTON, TX – When you’re the victim of a crime, you count on the cops to hold the perps accountable.
But get this: The Houston Police Department dropped the ball on over 20,000 cases in 2013, meaning they didn’t even investigate 15,000 burglaries and thefts, 3000 assaults, and almost 3000 hit-and-runs.
The Police Executive Research Forum discovered this alarming information in a study commissioned by the city.
So what is HPD’s response?
“Those crimes that aren’t addressed are the most minor offenses for that particular given category,” Executive Assistant Chief Timothy Oettmeier said.
Oh yeah, that’s gonna feel really reassuring when you’re the one whose stuff is stolen.
The reason behind these lapses in investigating is largely that the HPD is seriously understaffed. But fixing this problem isn’t as simple as going out and hiring a few more people.
“Keep in mind,” Oettmeier said. “If we had the money, we still have to go out and recruit them, we still have to find them, and that’s becoming more and more difficult to do in a good economy.”
Sure, that sounds tough. But try explaining it to the more than 20,000 people whose crimes weren’t investigated.
Let’s just hope this news doesn’t make criminals feel like our fair city is an easy target.