Dallas criminals have just been given a license to steal – up to $750, that is.
Following his November 2018 election win, Dallas County Criminal District Attorney John Creuzot, a Democrat, announced that he will no longer prosecute certain low-level crimes, including thefts of personal items worth less than $750 as long as it isn’t for economic gain, according to CBS DFW.
Creuzot began his leniency approach shortly after he was elected, announcing “On my agenda is to not ask judges to send people to the penitentiary for technical violations of their probation – for instance not doing community service, not paying fines and fees.”
So adhering to the terms of one’s probation in Dallas County is now optional as well.
In a Friday letter, Creuzot expanded on his policies – adding that first-time marijuana offenses or any drug possession cases involving less than .01 grams of a drug will not be prosecuted.
Creuzot said he’ll dismiss many criminal trespass cases as well, charges he says are most often brought against the mentally ill and homeless.
He also said his office will no longer prosecute theft cases involving personal items worth less than $750, unless evidence shows it was for economic gain. –CBS DFW
Dallas shop owners are not happy. Andrew Arterburn, owner of One Stop Express in Uptown, said that a shoplifter just stole $120 worth of laundry detergent on Thursday – and is not taking kindly to Creuzot’s new approach.
“It’s a slap on the wrist. They go to jail, get a meal, get let go. And they’re not going to be prosecuted at all for it,” said Arterburn.
The President of the National Black Police Association, Sgt. Sheldon Smith, said he worries it will lead to more crime.
“It opens the door for some people to think they can commit crimes,” Sgt. Smith said.
Dallas County Sheriff Marian Brown told CBS 11, her office will continue to enforce the laws as mandate by state legislation. –CBS DFW
“I absolutely think it’s sending the wrong message,” said Dallas Police Association President Mike Mata. “That shop owner is going to take matters into his own hands, or he’s going to have to let $600 worth of merchandise walk out of his store, and I don’t think he’s going to be in business very long.”