You’ve probably heard that you shouldn’t kick someone when they’re down. Not everyone lives by that rule however, as ungrateful lawless thugs work the gulf coast region to kick Texas victims while they’re still reeling from Hurricane Harvey. Hundreds of thousands of homes are either still under water, or flooded beyond habitability, and many are left empty until renovations can begin. This makes both the people and the dwellings vulnerable.
The residents have gathered in various shelters, or with friends who live on higher ground, but they’ve had to leave the bulk of their belongings behind. This wouldn’t have been a huge issue in the past, but as the entitled masses grow more in number and boldness, the danger to people’s livelihoods grows with it. Many people have found themselves targeted by looters who are taking advantage of this tragic situation.
Because of this extra hardship, the city of Houston is having to put the city under curfew and allocate valuable resources to arresting those responsible for these crimes. The vandals are not only wearing ski masks and ransacking the empty houses, but some apparently wanted to get their hands on the good stuff and have been impersonating officers, calling for residents to evacuate their perfectly safe homes so that they can then rob them.
The Daily Mail reported on the situation in Houston:
“Forty people have been arrested for looting across Houston and its surrounding areas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, police said.
Houston officials have imposed an overnight curfew running from midnight until 5am, but that hasn’t stopped dozens of people from breaking into homes and stores looking for cash and other items.
The city has also warned residents of scammers, posing as firefighters and Homeland Security special agents and telling people to evacuate in order to ransack their homes.
Despite the 40 arrests, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said the curfew and the increased police presence have helped keep most criminals at bay.
Houston officials have imposed an overnight curfew running from midnight until 5am, but that hasn’t stopped dozens of people from breaking into homes and stores looking for cash and other items. Pictured above, flooded homes are shown near Lake Houston.
Despite the 40 arrests, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said the curfew and the increased police presence have helped keep most criminals at bay. Pictured above, debris lies on the ground at Copano Cove in Rockport, Texas
‘It was effective,’ he told the Houston Chronicle. ‘It’s going to remain in effect until we kind of get past the situations we’re in.’
Houston police Chief Art Acevedo said there were no arrests for curfew violation on Tuesday, the first night after it was imposed.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, looters broke into stores across Houston, stealing cigarettes, cash from registers and cell phones.
An Apple store in Houston had its door blasted open with a gun before it was looted, according to reports.
Prosecutors issued a statement promising that looters would face tougher penalties under Texas law for committing burglaries during a crisis.
‘People displaced or harmed in this storm are not going to be easy prey,’ said Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg. ‘Anyone who tries to take advantage of this storm and break into homes or businesses should know that they are going to feel the full weight of the law,’ she added.
‘Offenders will be processed around the clock without delay.’
The city has also warned residents of scammers, posing as firefighters and Homeland Security special agents and telling people to evacuate in order to ransack their homes. Pictured above, houses are seen partially submerged in flood waters in Northwest Houston
Mayor of Houston Sylvester Turner said: ‘Just like we can rescue you we can also arrest you – obey the curfew, don’t engage in looting, let’s focus on rebuilding our city.’
Scammers posing as officials have also been knocking on doors in looting attempts.
City officials warned people to ask anyone knocking on their doors for official badges and credentials with their name and organization.
San Leon volunteer firefighter Jody Garcia told the Houston Chronicle that one person posing as a first responder pointed a shotgun at two residents who were trapped in their homes and told them to leave.
US Immigration [sic] and Customs Enforcement has confirmed they will not be conducting any operations in Houston during the rescue effort.
During Harvey relief efforts US Immigration and Customs Enforcement is not conducting immigration enforcement operations in the area.
Houston’s 911 headquarters (pictured) is furiously trying to keep up with tens of thousands of calls for help related to Harvey. Operators are aiding panicked callers even as they’re dealing with their own personal losses in the storm
In Houston people coming into shelters will not have their immigration status checked.
Houston’s 911 headquarters is furiously trying to keep up with tens of thousands of calls for help related to Harvey. Operators are aiding panicked callers even as they’re dealing with their own personal losses in the storm.
At its worst, from Sunday into Monday, some 75,000 calls poured in, more than eight times the normal 24-hour load.
‘This is like nothing we’ve ever experienced before,’ operator Erika Wells said during a short reprieve between calls.
The number of confirmed deaths linked to Harvey is at least 23. Authorities are investigating 17 more deaths to determine whether they were storm-related, and they fear many more bodies may be found as floodwaters start receding.”
Hurricane Harvey was the largest natural disaster to befall Texas in over half a century with an estimated damage bill in the billions. Those in Houston and surrounding areas are already dealing with enough tragedy in their lives, and shouldn’t have to stress about their households being raided while trying to keep safe.
It’s ridiculous that the Houston Police Department should have to allocate resources to chase down petty thieves and patrol just to keep these thugs off the streets at night. Hopefully these 40 criminals will be swiftly brought to justice.
Source: Daily Mail ,freedomdaily.com