houston rallies against cstore crimes

Mayor appoints new task force to protect stores and owners.

Houston officials are uniting to combat crimes against convenience stores. City Mayor Bill White has put together a task forcededicated to reducing these crimes and making stores safer forboth employee and customers.

“We’re going to be looking into various crime prevention plansto help c-store owners,” said Officer Muzafar Siddiqi of theHouston Police Department.

A member of the task force himself, Officer Siddiqi is no stranger to c-store crime prevention in the area. After a series ofc-store murders in 2000, Houston’s former mayor appointedSiddiqi to serve as a convenience store liaison between the policeand retailers. Due to his dissent and multi-lingual skills, OfficerSiddiqi has been able to form a bond with the primarily Indian andPakistani storeowners in the area, frequently visiting and helpingthem with various crime awareness issues that can sometimesplague c-stores.

Because of his expertise, Siddiqi was a no-brainer for joiningthe task force made up of local police officers, council membersand, of course, c-store owners. The group will meet regularly to discuss what’s currently going on and what can be done to makec-stores safer in the community. After four months, the task forcewill report their findings to Mayor White.

“We’re going to look into the needs of c-stores owners,” saidSiddiqi. “Then our findings will be reported to Mayor White, who willdiscuss with us any changes that can be made.”

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