Harris Co. Republican chairman calls out city and county to address crime after being mugged

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Newly elected Chairman for the Harris County Republican Party, Cindy Siegel, is calling on District Attorney Kim Ogg and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo to address the issue of crime in the city of Houston after she was the victim of a purse snatching outside of a Midtown bar.

"I was lucky he didn't have a knife or a gun," Siegel told Eyewitness News on Wednesday.

Siegel said she was about to walk into Dogwood Midtown when a man came from behind and snatched her purse.

She said two bartenders took action and ran after the man. He ended up dropping the purse, which was later returned to Siegel.

"It's one of those things that sort of happened so quickly, and because he did attack me from behind, it didn't sink in until the event was over," Siegel said.

Following the purse snatching, no one called 911. Instead, Siegel said she and those inside Dogwood tried to call Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo directly to arrange the filing of a police report.

Siegel said she wants her situation to shed light on a bigger issue involving crime in the community.

"Personally, I'd like to see the [Ogg's] policies and our judges to do what they were elected to do, which is to make sure criminals are put away in prison," she said.

Meanwhile, bar workers in Midtown said they see crime often, but never anything as bold as what happened to Siegel.

According to the Houston Police Department's crime statistics from 2019, there were 186 robberies or purse snatching in the Midtown area. In 2020, there were 155.

Overall, in 2020, the city dealt with crime numbers skyrocketing.

"I'm concerned about neighborhood kids being able to play in their front lawn and not worry about their safety," said Siegel. "If Houston is safe, if Harris County is safe, it's good for all of us. It's not a partisan issue, it's about safety of families."

The incident remains under investigation.

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