Memphis Police Address City's Violent Crime Problem

(AP Photo/Colleen Long)

The city of Memphis, Tennessee is probably best known for Graceland, the home of Elvis Pressley. However, the rest of the city seems to be lacking in grace.

Like many places, they’ve got a violent crime problem.

It’s bad enough that authorities held gathering to talk about what they’re doing to address it.

Crime victims and those concerned about crime gathered in East Memphis Wednesday night to find out what the Memphis Police Department, the Shelby County District Attorneys Office, and the Crime Commission are doing about it.

Nearly 100 people took part in the Crime Forum at the Church of the Holy Communion on Walnut Grove.

“It’s time to drop the hammer,” said one man in attendance.

The city’s new police Chief C.J. Davis admits violent crime is a big problem in Memphis.

“In 2021, there have been 15,000 shootings,” said Chief Davis.

That number compares to just over 9,000 in 2016.

MPD stats also show that violent incidents involving guns have gone up 72% over the last four years.

That’s clearly not good.

However, there’s something people can do to potentially help reduce some of that. They could try not being complete and total idiots.

Also, this year, nearly 1,400 guns have been stolen from vehicles. As a result, MPD is asking law-abiding citizens not to leave guns in their cars.

“67% of the guns we seize off the streets have been stolen from someone’s vehicle. That’s a lot of guns,” said Chief Davis.

Now, I understand there are times when you don’t really have a lot of choice about leaving a gun in the car. For example, if you’re having to go into an off-limits place, you can either break the law or leave your weapon in the car.

But far too many people seem to revel in having a gun dedicated to their vehicle as if it’s somehow a benefit.

It’s not.

Look, your car isn’t that difficult to get into. Without any special training or skills, I can get into a vehicle in about 30 seconds. I might make a lot of noise in doing so, but I can do it.

Do you really think a thief can’t?

Then there’s the fact that so many people seem to leave guns in the car and forget to lock the doors. I mean, a car isn’t particularly secure, but to not even take basic steps is beyond stupid. After all, a lot of people won’t take the case of trying to enter a locked car out of fear of alerting someone. It’s not that they can’t, they just don’t want to.

If for some reason you have to keep a firearm in the car, do yourself a favor and get a vehicle-mounted safe for it. You can pull it out of there when you get behind the wheel, but it at least keeps the gun out of criminal hands.

To be fair, there may not be an appreciable difference in violent crime if Memphis is already saturated with firearms, but that’s kind of irrelevant.

People need to be responsible gun owners by being, you know, responsible. Don’t make it easy for the dirtbags, folks, that’s all. That shouldn’t be asking too much.

Nov 26, 2021 10:30 AM ET