Austin Murder Victim’s Brother: It wasn’t a gun problem, it was a “Defin the Police” problem
Blood stains remain on 6th Street after an early morning shootout on Saturday, June 12, 2021 in downtown Austin, Texas. (Aaron Martinez / Austin American-Statesman via AP)
Early on Saturday morning, two teenagers opened fire on each other in the middle of Austin’s crowded entertainment district, East Sixth Street. New reports suggest there was an “argument” between the two, though it’s not clear what that means – whether it might have been related to a gang. The acting Austin Police Chief described it as “an isolated case between two parties”.
This part of East Sixth Street, also known as Dirty Sixth, was crowded on Friday night and early Saturday morning. As a result, at the start of the shooting, 14 people were hit when the two opened fire on each other. Two of the injured were seriously injured, one, 25-year-old Douglas Kantor, has since died.
While the two shooters initially escaped, they have since been arrested. A suspect was arrested on Sunday and is believed to be 15 years old. He was not identified because of his age. The second suspect arrested yesterday is 17 years old and because he was charged as an adult, KHOU has identified him as Jeremiah Tabb.
BREAKING: A second person – a 17 year old – was arrested and charged in connection with the shooting on Sixth Street that killed a New York tourist and injured 13 others. The suspect is charged with grievous bodily harm as an adult while the investigation continues.
– Tony Plohetski (@tplohetski) June 14, 2021
As expected, the shooting by two people illegally carrying firearms resulted in all the usual bloody shirt renouncers waving their bloody shirts, including calls to Texas Governor Greg Abbott to veto the constitutional wear law that the still unsigned on his desk.
Here’s the lazy Mayor’s knee-jerk reaction. . .
Austin, Texas Mayor @MayorAdler tells @SRuhle that there is tremendous grief and increased demand for gun reform following a fatal mass shooting in his city this weekend.
“People are tired.” #RuhleReports pic.twitter.com/3Pg2U3wLXB
– Stephanie Ruhle reports (@RuhleOnMSNBC) June 14, 2021
So will everyone delete their tweets accusing them of constitutional carry? Because teenagers in Texas can’t buy / carry handguns … nor drink alcohol … nor go to bars. #txlege https://t.co/MBVVJSDTpy
– Justin W. Williamson (@DubyaWilliamson) June 13, 2021
A prominent person wanted to make it clear that he did not hold firearms or the lack of gun rights restrictions responsible for the shooting or death of Douglas Kantor. Douglas’ brother Nick posted this message on his Facebook page. . .
This lack of resources that Nick Kantor mentions is something big cities across the country have grappled with. These are self-inflicted wounds resulting from the onslaught on George Floyd to expose law enforcement agencies and “reinvent law enforcement”.
Austin City Council last year cut funding for three courses at the Police College and cut funding for 150 current officer positions, a cut of about $ 20 million in the department’s budget. All of these reinventions have also resulted in nearly 300 Austin cops reshaping their careers and dropping or retiring from the police force.
Things got so bad here in Austin that state lawmakers took action and Governor Abbott signed a bill to punish larger cities that no longer serve their law enforcement functions. The state will withhold property taxes and use the funds to pay officials from the Texas Department of Public Safety to help maintain law and order.
But the new law has not yet come into force. The cuts to the city’s ministry budget, along with police officers who have quit and retired – not to mention the recently repealed homeless camping law and a prosecutor not interested in prosecuting criminals – have resulted in an insufficient number of officials on the streets and a corresponding increase in violent crime. Not to mention significantly longer 911 response times.
Mayor Adler will have to forgive those of us here in town who do not buy the party line for the need for more gun control. Texas already has laws against minors carrying hidden firearms, grievous bodily harm, reckless endangerment, and murder. It’s not clear what additional laws anti-gun activists and politicians think they would have prevented the weekend shooting, and the media never seems interested in asking that question.
Since one of the perpetrators is a youngster, we may not learn much about him or his files. But it will be interesting to find out how many previous encounters Jeremiah Tabb had with the criminal justice system.