Local activist claims mistreatment by Houston police

Travis McGee, a business owner in the Sunnyside neighborhood, took his complaints about the police to the city council.

January 6, 2012 8:35:38 AM PST
A local community activist dedicated to fighting crime says he was mistreated by Houston police.

Travis McGee says he has tried to lower crime in his Sunnyside neighborhood for years, but what happened over the New Year's weekend was a whole other matter.

On December 30, there was a shooting at a loan business not far from McGee's own business in Sunnyside. McGee says he was outside of his business trying to gather information about the shooting for some of his customers. But instead of helping, he says Houston police made him feel like he was a suspect.

McGee says never went to the crime scene, but he was questioned and detained for about 30 to 40 minutes. The entire time he said he was trying to explain to officers that he was simply a nearby business owner.

McGee says he was unhappy with what took place and he brought his complaint to city hall.

"I was illegally searched. I was illegally detained," McGee told city council. "I did not want to go back up to the scene of the crime so someone could accidentally point me out. I could not get all the badges because I did not want to make a sudden movement."

McGee's concern struck a nerve with a number of city council members, especially in light of several officer involved shootings that have taken place in the Houston area over the last few weeks.

Several council members say they have already taken steps to try to get to the bottom of what took place. HPD Chief Charles McClelland is aware of the situation from December 30. The issue is far from over.