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Why Is Austin Media Refusing to Release Description of At-Large Austin Shooter?

Early Saturday morning, a gunman shot and injured at least 19 people outside an Austin, Texas, bar. Rick Moran reported:

Sixth Street in Austin, Texas, was crowded with post-Covid revelers on Friday night when a man described as “black” with a thin build and “dreadlocks” opened fire outside a bar. At least 13 people were taken to the hospital. Of the 13 wounded, 11 were in stable condition with two critical.

On Saturday afternoon, the Austin Police Department updated its website to say that one suspect is in custody, while another is still at large. Earlier in the day, police released this description of the suspect:

The suspect(s) remains at-large. It is unknown if there is one, or multiple suspects involved. There is one suspect described as a black male, with dread locks, wearing a black shirt and a skinny build. The area will be closed for an extended amount of time to process the crime scene. Investigators are collecting and reviewing camera footage and surveillance video.

That description–black, male, dreadlocks–was not only in an official announcement by the APD, but it was all over social media as well on Saturday. But the city’s flagship newspaper, the Austin-American Statesman, is refusing to release the description of the suspect, a dangerous mass shooter who is still on the run, because–you guessed it–it would be racist to do so. The newspaper explained in an Editor’s Note appended to its main story on the shooting:

Editor’s note: Police have only released a vague description of the suspected shooter as of Saturday morning. The Austin American-Statesman is not including the description as it is too vague at this time to be useful in identifying the shooter and such publication could be harmful in perpetuating stereotypes. If more detailed information is released, we will update our reporting.

The description by police was not, by any stretch of the imagination, “vague.” The description, in fact, dramatically reduced the suspect pool in the Austin area, narrowing it down to black males wearing dreadlocks–or 50% of the 15% black population in the city, if you’re doing the math. If you’re a police officer (or a citizen who is on the lookout for an at-large criminal) wouldn’t you want to know that information? Wouldn’t you need that information to make an arrest?

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And then there’s this bit from the newspaper’s report: “Police said they had zeroed in on two suspects involved in [a] previous dispute and were rapidly working to arrest them.”

In other words, the Statesman knew that the police knew who the suspects were. If police said the suspects were black, why didn’t the newspaper take the APD at its word? I’ll tell you why: the Statesman wants to perpetuate the fictional narrative that dangerous, gun-toting white supremacist rednecks are roaming the city of Austin, hunting black people.

The Statesman would have us believe that everyone in the Austin area was a potential suspect, when, in fact, the newspaper knew that not to be true. (On a related note, the same public safety issues arise when no one knows whether a suspect is a male or a female because assuming someone’s gender might result in hurt feelings.)

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Austin is not alone in prioritizing the woke agenda over safety. As PJM’s Kevin Downey Jr. reported last week, San Francisco police released the picture of a suspect who lit a woman on fire on a BART train, but blurred out her face, purportedly to avoid perpetuating racial stereotypes.

Austin and other U.S. cities continue to demonstrate that they care more about being woke than protecting the public from dangerous criminals. That’s why, as PJM’s Bryan Preston has documented, police are retiring or fleeing these cities in droves and murder rates are skyrocketed all over the country.

If I were an Austonian right now I’d be putting my house on the market and getting out before it turns into another Chicago gangland.

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