At the close of last Thursday’s Graham City Council meeting, Councilwoman Pam Scott called for a task force to end the growing criminal activity in the city.
“I’m not sure where we go from here,” Scott said. “Obviously, there were arrests made, but I don’t think that this is the end of the problem.”
The Graham Police Department, acting in concert with several other law enforcement agencies including the Texas Rangers and the ATF, made three arrests on Monday, Jan. 13.
Michael James Williams, 33, of Graham, Amanda Diane Wilson, 31, of Graham and Bobby Ray Huffman, 24, of Graham were all arrested in connection with the December burglaries of First United Methodist Church, the Graham Area Food Pantry and The National Theatre.
Scott added that it would be naive to think that last week’s arrests signify the end of the crime epidemic in Graham, and that law enforcement must remain vigilant and aggressive. The councilwoman also stressed the need to keep discussions of criminal activity in the forefront of the minds of the general public, and that enlisting the help of Graham citizens could also be a benefit to decreasing the crime.
“Whether we get a group together, call it a task force, but I think that we need to move forward from this in some respects so that we can help you guys (area law enforcement agencies),” Scott said. “I know you guys have to be completely overwhelmed in what’s happening. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to that have told me ‘I’ve lived here all my life, and we didn’t lock our cars or our house.’ Everything has completely changed.”
Scott herself was the recent victim of a burglary on Dec. 30. The suspects broke into her business, The National Theatre on the Graham Square, and then set fire to her office. Scott said that the only reason the fire didn’t spread was because the burglars shut the office door after starting the fire, cutting off oxygen to the area. The burglary of The National was just one of five other known burglary attempts in Graham that week.
Read the full version in Wednesday's Graham Leader.