Our recent look at plans for an $8.5 million redesign on West 7th Street (“West 7th Breakdown,” Aug 22) examined the challenges of having 50,000 vehicles a day driving on a major thoroughfare that cuts through a busy party area. City officials refer to the area roughly bordered by West 7th, Foch Street, University Boulevard, and West Lancaster Avenue as the West 7th Core Area. We requested statistics involving police actions in that area but didn’t receive them in time for the story’s publication. Now, the stats have arrived and show how crime is rising as the number of people who flock to the area has grown over the past 10 years.
Assaults have increased from just a handful a year to more than 100. The highest number of assaults reported in a single year was 109 in 2017, up from 95 the year before. That number will probably increase this year –– more than 70 assaults were reported from January to July.
Since January, three people have reported being kidnapped from the area. Only two kidnappings were reported in the previous 10 years.
Seven forcible sex crimes have been reported this year, compared to 11 during the previous 10 years.
Drunkenness cases have spiked, with 216 being reported between January and July compared to 242 in all of 2017. Compare that to 2010, when police arrested only nine people for public intoxication.
This year’s total number of DUI cases has already surpassed the 35 reported in 2017, which was more than double the previous year’s total.
These police incidents are increasing but seem reasonable considering the large number of people carousing in that area at night. Some of those folks stagger out of the bars and walk across five busy lanes of West 7th Street traffic looking for cheap food. And yet the number of accidents involving pedestrians and vehicles is remarkably low. Only one incident has been reported since January.
Compare that to five in 2015, six in 2016, and three in 2017.
They might become intoxicated and disorderly at times, but Fort Worth party dogs are apparently pretty good at dodging cars.