Following Violence, Dallas Police Increase Presence For 2015 Oak Lawn Halloween Block Party.
Last night, during a monthly LGBT task force and community town hall meeting at Oak Lawn Library, Dallas City Councilman Adam Medrano addressed the recent surge of violence that’s taken place in the Cedars Springs and Oak Lawn neighborhoods where, since September 1, eight reported incidents of violent attacks have taken place.
In anticipation of Saturday’s annual Oak Lawn Halloween Block Party — a large celebration with costumes, food, music and booze at which LGBT and LGBT-friendly folks paint the town red… and orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet — Medrano and Dallas police announced plans for an increased police presence in the area over the weekend.
Dallas Deputy Police Chief Catrina Shead says that increased presence entails bike officers, undercover officers and more officers on foot, per the Dallas Morning News. Specifically, officers will aim to provide more eyes on dimly lit areas and to steer party-goers in directions better surveilled.
Some residents, however, wonder if that’s enough. Michael Dominguez, himself a victim of an October 2 attack in which he was stabbed in the eye and behind the ear, and knocked unconscious while walking home from Station 4, also addressed the meeting: “We are talking about stuff that has already happened; what is being done to attempt to catch these guys?”
To date, one of the eight area attacks has been classified as a hate crime. In that instance, an unidentified 29-year-old was beaten with a baseball bat and robbed by four men as he walked to a friend’s home during Dallas’ Gay Pride weekend in September. The victim’s skull was fractured and he sustained multiple cuts, abrasions and bruises. The four men yelled gay slurs at the victim as they beat him.