San Antonio Police are working to reduce crime by focusing more resources on areas they have identified as micro hot spots—geographic areas which consist of about 500-meter grids.
The 21 areas identified had five or more violent crimes reported between October and December 2021. Those crimes included murder, aggravated assault, aggravated robbery, robbery and deadly conduct with a firearm.
Councilwoman and Public Safety Chair Melissa Cabello Havrda said the efforts to reduce crime is involving every city agency that can help, including code compliance, DART and park police officers.
“We’ve seen in this last couple of weeks that innocent bystanders are getting killed,” Havrda said. “My response to that is that it worries me too. I live in these neighborhoods, my family lives in these neighborhoods, and I just I’m concerned for the people that aren’t engaging in risky behavior.”
Liz Hanks, Texas Chapter leader of Moms Demand Action, said crime is on the rise across the state and the nation. She explained that there’s no one answer to solving the problem, but it’s going to take a teamwork approach.
“It’s not just policing, it could be policing, plus these other interventions that are going to get us over the hump of this really bad crime wave we have right now,” she said.
She strongly supports grassroots groups like Stand Up SA and Big Mamma’s Safe House working within the community to reduce crime. She said these types of programs along with other intervention efforts work, but it takes time and consistent funding.
She said it also has to do with a change in how weapons are viewed.
“We find that it’s just become a very cavalier attitude now toward firearms. And that’s how you end up with so many children being shot all around the state,” Hanks said.
SAPD is expected to update the Public Safety Committee on how the micro hot spot program is doing during the next public meeting