Detroit Police Roll Out New 911 Policy:


DETROIT — The new 911 policy. Unknown to most people, the Detroit police last week quietly rolled out its latest plan to save money: Virtual 911.

This is how it works. If you’ve been held up and the gunman is long gone, or you’ve been assaulted but not too badly, or your home has been broken into, that’s not 911 anymore. They’ll transfer you or you can call the Telephone Crime Reporting Unit yourself at 313-267-4600.

Since officers couldn’t get to a majority of the 850,000 calls to 911 last year, most of the time you’ll talk to an operator, not a cop.

Nobody in the police department wanted to explain this on camera, but I’m told by a spokesperson if your call is life-threatening, you’ll get an officer. Nobody we spoke to, however, thought this was a good idea.

“It’s giving criminals the wrong idea,” said Tony Wright, a retired Detroit homicide detective. “If you want to do something, do it in Detroit. The police won’t show up.”