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Last Straw

The Great Recession sent Michigan into a national unemployment high of 15%. With loss of funding for policing and increased crime, loyal Detroit residents began to leave the city.

Beyond the abandoned homes that make up neighborhoods throughout metropolitan Detroit, a domino effect exists where lack of employment opportunities forces would-be tax payers from the city, losing tax revenue. In turn, the lack of revenue for basic operating costs diminishes and the city can no longer meet the safety needs of its residents, forcing many tax payers to leave the city.

“As bad as Detroit is in people’s minds...the average Detroiter is not worried about being shot. The average Detroiter is worrying about home burglaries and auto thefts but the level of shootings and homicides were so significant when I took this job that we decided to take a triage approach,” Chief Warren Evans of the Detroit Police Department said. 

However, with attention focused elsewhere, response to burglaries, auto thefts and misdemeanors suffer or are non-existent. Often it takes hours, if at all, for police to respond to a resident’s home following a break-in because they are too busy working other calls. 

Commissioned work for The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times