Wednesday, January 15, 2014

An unreported murder in Clear Lake?

It sucks to live in a newspaper no-man's land.  I've blogged about this before, how our area is caught between Houston and Galveston and therefore, from a news reporting perspective, we tend to get treated like we belong to neither place.
Our center of everything is in the middle of nowhere.  It also doesn't help that Clear Lake straddles a county line.  Historically, newspapers have largely defined themselves by virtue of geographically-named places rather than centers of population.  We are a center of population without a cohesive single identity. 

Sign at FM 518 and the Gulf Freeway. 

I re-launch this lament this morning in response to the routine crime review I just finished.  Periodically, I look at published statistics in order to evaluate what's going on in Centerpointe.  Answer:  Not much.  Happily, it's been Dullsville around here for the past five months.  Almost no criminal activity.  One theft reported from a yard and a few same-address incidents of family violence.  Not even worth showing a screengrab of the reports.

However, in digging through the available material, I did find this:
It kinda sticks out like a sore thumb, doesn't it?? 

This is a screengrab from a Houston Chronicle (paywalled section) article titled "HPD concentrates on hot spots to reduce homicides".  Here is a link to the associated map whence that screengrab came. 
I didn't recall hearing about any recent murders in Clear Lake, certainly not one in the tony Bay Oaks subdivision, and so I started digging to see what was available.
Answer:  Nothing.  There are Houston Police Department internal files that confirm the information presented on the map that Chronicle made, including this downloadable spreadsheet, but I found absolutely no news reporting by any source referencing that address or that street.

Screengrabbed from Google. 
Why??  Why is it that we have to hear every single day about every ridiculous petty skirmish homicide or tragedy that happens in apartment complexes and less prosperous areas of greater Houston, the kind of stories that bear no relevance to our suburban lives.  And yet something reportedly happens in our own community, in a place where it is least expected, and there's not a single peep.  It could be that this was an incident of an isolated nature that also has no relevance to our suburban lives, but the purpose of news reporting is to confirm or deny that kind of conclusion. 

And if the local news media is missing stuff like, well, murders, what else are we not hearing about??


But not necessarily better-informed.

Screengrabbed from Memecenter. 

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