Crime-riddled Dallas neighborhood gets federal grant

A crime-riddled far northeast Dallas neighborhood will get additional assistance from the federal government, officials announced Wednesday.

The area became the focus of a local and federal partnership called Project Safe Neighborhoods in 2018 and authorities have seen results. The hope is a new federal grant will bring even more improvement.

Attorney General William Barr was in the neighborhood Wednesday afternoon to announce a $700,000 grant from the Justice Department. That money will go directly to the community to fund programs, like a youth boxing center located off Forest Lane, where kids can go after school.

Part of that money will also go to the Dallas Police Department to use in its crime fighting efforts in the area. Currently one sergeant and 15 officers are assigned to the PSN program.

The U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas said violent crime in Northeast Dallas has dropped by nearly 20 percent over the past eight months

“It’s a close collaboration between federal and local law enforcement and surges resources to particularly violent pockets of our communities,” said Erin Nealy Cox.

Northeast Dallas encompasses two of the eight “tag zones” identified by Dallas PD as being areas of violent crime. None of this grant money will be used to fight crimes in the other areas — including Old East Dallas or South Dallas — where many high profile murders have recently taken place.

The attorney general said he hopes to be able to expand the PSN grant program in the future. When asked how can a city like Dallas address those areas of violent crime, Barr said the best way is by having a fully staffed police department.