Hurricane Katrina evacuees and crime in San Antonio
San Antonio Express-News:
It would be wrong to judge all evacuees because of the crimes that some of them may have committed, and anybody who does that would be advised to lay down his broad brush.
But crime has risen during the past year, although it remains unclear whether the evacuees are the reason, according to a compelling two-part series addressing the issue in the Express-News.
The cause of the increase, including a 55 percent rise in murders during the first eight months of the year, should concern public officials. But by neglecting to ask the tough questions about the connection between the crime and the evacuees, the city may have turned its back on federal money that could help combat the crime — and investigate its causes.
There may be no link between the evacuees and the higher crime rate, but the city will never know without investigating, and the data could help on at least two fronts:
If evacuees are responsible for more crime, it stands to reason that some, if not most, of the victims may be evacuees themselves, since many of the people fleeing the Gulf Coast ended up in the same areas of San Antonio. The more the police know about the crime, the more they can help those victims.
Complex with Katrina evacuees became a criminal haven
Ken Rodriguez: Here's the unvarnished truth about Katrina crime: It happened
In one area with evacuees, robbery is routine
Katrina crime: Perceived or real?