Bar owners in Texas have resorted to sleeping in their watering holes — while armed with guns — thanks to non-stop burglaries and the city’s soft-on-crime policies.
Lindsey Rae, the owner of Two-Headed Dog in Houston, was part of a coalition of bar owners — whose cash registered and liquor cabinets have been emptied recently — that begged elected officials for help Wednesday.
“I have been burglarized 15 times in the last year,” Rae said during a city council meeting.
“We’re seeing, if they are getting caught, they’re getting re-released because of the cash bond issues we’re having,” Rae explained. “They can come back and rob us again.”
After Raul Jacobo’s Cobos Barbecue was hit twice in two weeks, he started sleeping in his restaurant office with a gun — instead of at home with his wife.
“If we have to protect our property, if we feel vulnerable or terrified for our lives and we have to do what we have to do, it’s in the city’s hands,” Jacobo told KHOU.
Violent felons in Texas’ largest city repeatedly walk free with very low bail or so-called “personal bonds” — that don’t require any money to be paid.
One-in-5 crimes in Bayou City were committed by someone who could be in custody, an investigation by KTRK found.
Tod Jones walked in on a burglary at his Glitter karaoke joint, detaining the crook until police arrested him, he told KHOU.
“Next thing I find out, he’s out [of jail] the next day,” he said.
He added, “They’re coming in, grabbing as many bottles as they can, throwing it in a bag and then they’re out.
“Both my windows are broken, and I’m like, ‘Man, I don’t even want to fix them because they’re going to be broken again in the next few days.’”
The fed-up entrepreneurs also cited a slow response time from cops, who they claimed sometimes arrive one to four hours after break-ins.
For their part, city leaders assured the victims their cases were a priority with investigators and that Houston police had increased patrols in the targeted areas.
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