Police in Democrat-Run Austin No Longer Responding to 'Non-Emergency' Calls
Residents in Texas city told to submit a report online or call 311 instead
The police department in one of the largest cities in Texas - Democrat-run Austin - has announced that it will no longer respond to "non-emergency" calls.
The new rules came into force on Friday, October 1, interim Austin Chief of Police Joseph Chacon revealed.
Residents and others in Austin are being told to submit a report online or call 311 in situations including when there is no immediate threat to life or property.
So, if a thief is already driving away in your car, calling 911 will not yield a response.
Speaking during a briefing this week, Chacon said the change in policy stems from recommendations from the far-left groups Reimagining 911 and Non-Police Crisis Response.
He also cited a lack of manpower due to challenges hiring enough officers and a jump in 911 calls this year from previous years due to skyrocketing crime rates in Democrat cities.
“A non-emergency is an incident in which the incident is no longer in progress, the suspect or the people involved are no longer on scene, and there is no further immediate threat to life or property,” Chacon said.
“If the call that you’re calling about does not meet all of that criteria, then we define that as an emergency call, that a call to 911 is appropriate,” he added.
Calls that won’t yield a police response provided they meet the criteria include those dealing with animals, attempted theft of property, burglaries at residences or businesses, and vehicular crashes if neither vehicle requires a tow and there are no injuries.
In some cases, civilian "crime technicians" may respond to collect evidence at the scene, according to Epoch Times.
Those who call 311 are being told they’ll likely be put on hold for some time because the operation center is experiencing staffing issues as well.
They can always go online and submit a report.
The 311 calls and online reports will be investigated down the line if such an investigation is deemed appropriate, Chacon said.
"What I would say is that if a person is in doubt about whether it’s an emergency or not, then just call 911 and that is going to be the best way to make sure that you know,” he said.
"We will help you sort that out and and and get you pointed in the right direction."
The Austin Police Commission, which represents officers, nor the office of Austin Mayor Steve Adler, a Democrat, have commented on the change.
Darin Short, a North Carolina man, told KXAN-TV that his daughter and 12 friends were in Austin in September and called 911 when the rental property they were staying in was burglarized.
They were told to call 311, which later directed them to file an online report.
“No law enforcement official arrived at the location,” Short said.