Houston first to score in on-line shooting reports

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4926 Chennault Road is located in the Holmes Road neighborhood near the south loop of the East Freeway in Houston…

Houston – Holmes Road is an inauspicious neighborhood of compact single-family homes in a neighborhood once closely associated in the public mind with a huge, stinking mess of a garbage dump.

That was back before there was anything like an Environmental Protection Agency, monitoring wells, land-fill site superfund requirements, membraneous prophylactic subsurface protection, or leachate collection pumping systems – as required by Subtitle D of the Clean Water Act of 1990 – a typical crony capitalism bonanza for “solid waste management consultants.” There were constantly smoldering fires, burning tires, swooping seagulls and idling diesels waiting in long lines to tip their loads at the end of potholed oyster shell-paved roads.

Lovely neighborhood, it was a huge transportation bottleneck located on a County Road at an appendix in the colonic arch of the city’s east end, the Ship Channel with its attendant odors and vapors – at a time when freeways were still on the drawing boards – in a go-man-go, wide open wildcat boom town constantly recreating itself as the “Eighth Wonder of World,” the newly proclaimed “Space City, U.S.A.”

Comes now, the Legislature of the State of Texas, to require that all police agencies involved in officer-related shootings resulting in injury or death file on-line reports within 30 days of their occurrence following a 5-day review by the Office of the Attorney General, as required by House Bill 1036, 85th Legislature, R.S. (2015).

It took effect on September 1.

Houston’s police department is the first law enforcement agency to file a report on September 5. Freeport came in second on the 16th.

As one may see, the form curiously resembles a balance sheet. On the left side of the form, the statistical data recorded is that of the person so injured by gunshot wound.

On the right side, there is recorded the age, ethnicity, and other curious details about the shooter – that is, the cop.

In this case, the person injured by gunshot is a black man, the shooter white. The black man is 21, younger than the white man, who is 28.

The white man was summoned by dispatchers to an emergency situation, where he found a black man, armed with a firearm.

The names of the individuals are not mentioned on the form. There is only the name of a sergeant who prepared the document.

This is much different from the situation at Twin Peaks Restaurant at Waco on May 17. That location is far from the garbage dump. It is in a row of pricey places to get drinks and eats on the fringes of a parking lot of a shopping center with stores that cater to customers with substantial disposable income.

It is true that some of the people involved in that officer-related shooting incident which resulted in 9 deaths, 20 wounded and 177 cases of engaging in organized criminal activity had firearms.

The difference is that there is no on-line report of what happened there because police were not required to make any such report until September 1 – just as there is no truly on-line report of what happened in the 4900 block of Chennault, when the Legislature began to require police to make the reports.

A white cop shot a black man with a gun.

A group of white cops shot a group of white and Hispanic men, some of whom had guns.

Go figure.

So mote it be.



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