Abilene Police Chief urges calm after busy week of violent crime

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ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Abilene Police Chief Marcus Dudley says perspective is key when considering a week plagued by several days of violent crime including three shootings and two homicide investigations.

TIMELINE: From the span of Monday, October 11 to Sunday, October 18 there were several violent crimes reported in Abilene:

  • The first taking place Monday when an alleged love triangle lead to the shooting death of a local man.
  • The next, a Thursday shooting that was not reported until Friday which lead to a SWAT standoff for most of the day as the suspect, now in custody, hid from police in a central Abilene home.
  • That same suspect, Seth Adam Blake, was also connected to what’s now deemed a homicide by APD after a young man’s body was found near the Abilene Brush Center – Blake is considered a person of interest in his death.
  • And finally, on Sunday a man was reportedly shot in a mobile home park off Pioneer Drive during a dispute with a neighbor.

All of these crimes are still under investigation but should be cause for alarm for most, says Chief Dudley, as those involved reportedly knew each other and were not committed against strangers.

Even so, it can be concerning to hear about such violent acts happening one right after another in the span of a week. That being said, Chief Dudley implores that it’s crucial to take a closer look at the finer details of these crimes – three of which have a common suspect.

“We had about four incidents that happened, and of those, three of them were committed by the same person,” said Chief Dudley. “If we keep in mind there were two different sets of circumstances and one of which involved three different incidents in terms of the arrestee, I think that helps bring about a certain amount of calm for us.”

As current life mimics one that was once pre-pandemic, Chief Dudley says crime is seemingly doing the same. When comparing violent crimes from 2020 to 2021, Chief Dudley says crime appears bad currently because it’s simply more recurring than last year.

“With 2020 and the pandemic, we saw a significant reduction because of the social distancing,” said Chief Dudley. “There were only three homicides last year.”

Again, as most of these recent violent crimes allegedly involved people that were friends, romantically involved, or neighbors – Chief Dudley says avoiding similar spikes in the future could be prevented by recognizing when a situation is getting violent and de-escalating.

“What if someone who was standing by intervened? Ask people to just take a deep breath and let’s find other ways to resolve this conflict,” said Chief Dudley.

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