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East side neighborhood leaders presented with solutions for crime increase

March 31, 2016

DENS 5 TV SAN ANTONIO -- Up until Monday, every meeting held to address the violence on the east side has yielded few results and a lot of frustration. However, east-side leaders got together once again with the San Antonio Police Department and, this time, an actual plan and solutions were discussed.

“It was actually a refreshing conversation because you saw a lot of folks who usually work in their own little silos, come together,” said Brian Dillard, vice president of the Dignowity Hill Neighborhood Association. Some of those solutions include increased police resources, as well as having officers patrol on foot in crime hot spots. It's something, Warrick said, hasn’t been done in decades and something Dee Smith believes will help.

“Instead of sitting in the parking lot waiting for a phone call, or the laptop, you have to be out there in the area on top of the crime,” said Smith, the outgoing president of the Dignowity Hill Neighborhood Association.

The city will also be launching ShotSpotter in the coming weeks; gunshot detection software that alerts police when a gun is fired. It's a crime that authorities believe too many people on the east side are getting away with because residents are not calling the police.

“We know that in communities, like some parts of the east side in San Antonio, 8 out of 10 gunshots do not get called into police authority. So that means criminals are firing their weapons and knowing that police are not going to show up 80 percent of the time,” Warrick said. Warrick said the ShotSpotter technology could be unveiled as soon as the middle of April.