Ask A Cop

Apartment complexes often are hotspots for crime. What is the Dallas Police Department doing to reduce crime in them?

There is a problem in some places with drug sales in open-air breezeways and things of that nature. So one thing we’ve done is to take a stand against criminal trespass in apartment complexes. Normally, we would need an owner or representative of the owner to be present when an officer goes out there, so that they can say “Hey, I don’t want you on my property,” and as long as it is done in the presence of an officer, we can escort the person off the property or charge them with trespassing. But the managers and owners aren’t always readily available if there is a problem. So we’ve gone to the apartment managers and asked them to sign an affidavit giving us the right to enforce the criminal trespass law. The affidavit says that DPD has the right to press charges for criminal trespass on our property. So officers will go over there, and if they see anybody walking in the apartment complex who doesn’t seem to belong there, then they’ll say, “Do you live here?” And if we find out that they’re not supposed to be there, then we’ll give them a criminal trespass warning. We take their picture and put it in a database along with all their information. If we catch them out there again, and maybe it’s a different officer this time, they can look to see if this person has had a prior warning, and if so, then we take them to jail.
It’s people who are probably, more than likely, causing havoc on that property. If you’re coming through there to score some dope, and we just happen to catch you, then we’re going to take you to jail.


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