HIGHLANDS Local residents who have been concerned about an apparent high rate of criminal activity in the area, are hoping that the latest initiative by law enforcement agencies will have an affect on the perpetrators of such crimes.
In February, at a press conference, Sheriff Adrian Garcia and Pct. 3 Constable Ken Jones announced the formation of a joint task force to combat the problem with additional resources, a focus on the area, and improved communications between agencies.
According to a presentation made at a recent Rotary luncheon, by Captain Joel Inocencio of the sheriffs office, and Capt. Jasen Rabalais of the Constables office, the trial of the task force has been very effective, and will now be a permanent presence against crime in the east part of the county.
Since February, the TF has made 66 felony arrests, and 45 misdemeanor arrests, according to the officers. As well as working closely together, they also involve other agencies, including DPS, FBI, DEA, and ATF they said.
The task force offices together in the same building, shares radio calls, and case information. They pointed out that their deputies have the same training, which is T-CLOSE, required by the state.
The task force now consists of 2 sheriffs deputies and one canine unit, one lieutenant, 3 sargeants, and 2 captains. They work 40 hours a week, Monday through Friday, only on their cases. However, they are available 24/7 to work with other deputies on calls.
Their objectives are to be a Pro-Active Patrol, meaning they anticipate crime rather than react to situations, have zero tolerance, answer traffic calls, and conduct special assignments as well as all types of ordinary crimes.
The officers reminded the audience that although they are working on problems with game rooms, and drugs, they need intel to take action. Game rooms are legal until money is paid out. Citizens are urged to work with the new task force and report suspicious activity on the HCSO website: iwatch harris county.com. You can post information on the Facebook page of Captain Rabalais: Facebook.com/CaptainJasenRabalais. You may also call the sheriffs office on Wallisville Road, and ask for the Task Force. The number is 713-455-8050. The constables dispatch number, answered 24/7 is 713-453-6959.