Operation Crackdown: Dangerous Dallas Houses Torn Down

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DALLAS, TX -- The city of Dallas is bringing the house down! Operation Crackdown is a program to get rid of buildings that can be hot spots for crime or are abandoned eyesores.

“[We’re] knocking out the opportunity for drug dealers to have a place to harbor crime and drugs…that keeps the community held hostage with crime,” City Councilman Dwaine Caraway said.

Operation Crackdown has cracked down on more than 800 buildings since Caraway started it four years ago.

Friday, one house near Fair Park got the boot.

“Pastor Walker, right over here, he owns this whole block,” Mayor Mike Rawlings said.  “He knew this house needed to be torn down.  He didn’t have the money to tear it down, and we’re knocking it down for him.”

“We can rid our neighborhoods of these kinds of structures, and put back something that’s affordable and beautiful,” Dallas Police Department Deputy Chief Michael Coleman said.

The National Guard even stepped in to help out.

“We’re making the streets safer for the kids who are going to be us one day,” Colonel Suzanne Adkinson said.

Students visiting from Joseph J. Rhoads Learning center chanted, “Knock it down,” as the bulldozer clawed into the house. There it goes!  But it’s a bittersweet day for the folks raised in this house.

“A lot of childhood memories took place in this house,” Shumika Bates said.  “A lot of teenage memories took place in this house. It is very bittersweet to see the house just bulldozed down.”

Shumika’s grandmother and aunt left her family the home.  She says drugs weren’t the problem here.

“What made it crime was people who would get off the DART train, break in, homeless, and try to have somewhere to live.”

Now, hopefully, there won’t be anymore break-ins on this block.