Feds: Houston's crime rate is too low to qualify for COPS funding

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KPRC-2 has Mayor White’s reaction to the news that Houston is one of several major cities that will not be receiving federal Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) funding:

“This is the wrong decision for the wrong reasons,” Houston Mayor Bill White said. “We were told that Houston did not receive funding because our city budget is not distressed and our crime rates have gone down to the lowest levels in decades. Cities should not be penalized for good law enforcement and sound financial practices.”

Ironically, a couple of years ago, KHOU-11’s Mark Greenblatt caught HPD under-reporting crime statistics. Chief Hurtt was apoplectic when Greenblatt dared challenge HPD’s numbers, but after a while, HPD began reclassifying some homicides as murders.

Who knows if the city’s crime stats are accurate these days, but the Justice Department is using that criteria as one reason why Houston doesn’t need extra COPS funding.

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Anne Linehan is a co-founder of blogHOUSTON.