HPD gets much needed funds from interim DA

HOUSTON Interim DA Ken Magidson presented police Chief Harold Hurtt with a $200,000 check to be used for the department's Criminal Intelligence Division.

Chief Hurtt was non-specific when asked how the money will be used, other than to say some will go towards purchasing electronic surveillance equipment and other materials for CID. Magidson says those items will help his office make prosecutions more affective and more efficient.

"I mean, we want cases that are going to be quality cases where the evidence is collected appropriately and professionally and when we do that, we are going to present a case that we are going to be proud of," said Magidson

That's why we're doing this. To use what they can provide and present cases we're proud of."

All this comes on the heels of Tuesday's budget disclosure by Houston Mayor Bill White. With city revenues expected to grow by more than six percent, the new budget will provide an additional $105 million for police, fire and EMS.

The department also plans to get seven more police cadet classes, 300 new patrol cars, new helicopters and an integrated radio system.

HPD will also shift 98 officers from desk and court duty, to patrolling city streets. This is all good news as far as the chief is concerned.

"Yes, extremely happy we are getting more additional people," said Chief Hurtt. "We are also getting additional equipment to do a better job. We have the helicopters in there and support to go along with that."

Regarding the $200,000 check from the DA's office, Magidson says the money is made up of a $10 million discretionary fund, fueled by criminal seizures, so it doesn't cost taxpayers a penny.

Magidson will give the Pasadena police department $75,000 tomorrow for much needed body armour. He hopes to review other area police department requests for more disbursements in the future.

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