If you’re planning to steal some things, Dallas is apparently the place to be since its new DA is publicly announcing that certain crimes just won’t be prosecuted.
We already have plenty of examples of district attorneys not doing their jobs, but Dallas County District Attorney John Ceruzot, who was elected last November, has announced a number of reforms on his watch.
His office won’t prosecute any drug possession cases involving less than .01 grams of a drug; he also said in a letter that he’ll dismiss many criminal trespass cases as well, seeing as they’re most often perpetrated by the homeless and mentally ill.
And if you swipe $749 worth of Pampers from Wal-Mart, it’s all good.
Yes, among those low-level crimes are theft cases involving personal items worth less than $750, unless evidence shows it was for economic gain. So as long as you’re not reselling what you steal, just make sure you swipe less than $750 of personal items and you’re free to go.
NYC used to be famously crime-ridden until Rudy Giuliani took over as mayor. He made a number of reforms that dramatically reduced crime, but the most important one was a zero-tolerance policy. The police in NYC aggressively went after low-level crimes like loitering, fare-jumping, graffiti, etc. Today, there are lots of people trying to explain that Giuliani doesn’t deserve all the credit for the dramatic reduction of crime in NYC. In all fairness, maybe he doesn’t. On the other hand, there’s no mayor in America who was more successful at fighting crime than Rudy Giuliani.
In Dallas, the liberal DA, who incidentally did not campaign on being a friend to criminals, has decided to reverse this process. He’s basically giving the thumbs-up to criminal activity and guess what? The criminals are going to take full advantage of it. Sure, they may be cautious at first to see how this is going to play out since it’s not popular with the police or the governor, but once they feel confident they can get away with certain crimes, they will commit ad nauseam. For example, if no one ever gets prosecuted for stealing $100 worth of baby formula, why not go to 10 different stores per day and try to steal $100 worth of formula? In addition, siding with criminals over law-abiding citizens like this is likely to increase the amount of crime overall. Criminals that get away with breaking small laws on a regular basis are likely to move on to breaking bigger laws.
Let me also add that being poor isn’t an excuse for being a criminal. Poor people are more likely to be victims of criminals than criminals trash themselves. When you side with the criminals over the law-abiding citizens, all good people suffer for it, including the poor.