Axios Dallas

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Happy Tuesday! Tread softly near the dreams of others.

โ˜€๏ธ Today's weather: Clear, with highs in the mid-70s.

๐ŸŽต Sounds like: "One Last Time"

๐Ÿ“† It's a great day to contribute to our newsroom by becoming a member!

๐Ÿ—ณ๏ธ Situational awareness: Early voting starts today in the Texas primaries and will end on March 1. Election Day is March 5.

Today's newsletter is 913 investigative words โ€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Inside DPD's homicide investigations

A medical examiner displays a fatal bullet for detectives. Photos: Courtesy of Richard Sharum

Dallas photographer Richard Sharum was given unprecedented access to the Dallas Police Department's homicide unit for nearly a year โ€” documenting everything from crime scenes to office work to investigators' lives at home.

Why it matters: Sharum embedded with investigators in 2022, as the violent crime rate receded following a pandemic-era surge.

  • He negotiated access directly with Dallas police chief Eddie Garcia, who allowed Sharum to ride along with detectives on late-night calls for an up-close view of modern police work in one of the largest departments in the country.

The big picture: Sharum followed officers through dozens of investigations, including gruesome murders and suicides. He also witnessed the tender off-duty moments detectives spent with their children.

A body, covered, on a highway in Dallas
A crime scene investigation on a highway.

Catch up quick: Sharum is a well-known documentary photographer whose work has appeared in galleries in Kyoto, Japan; Sรฃo Paulo, Brazil; New York and Dallas. In 2015, Sharum displayed 60-foot photographs of Dallas residents experiencing homelessness on eight buildings downtown, including one facing City Hall.

By the numbers: DPD reported 214 homicides in 2022. Homicides in Dallas increased by almost 15% โ€” to 246 โ€” between 2022 and 2023, per DPD.

What they're saying: Sharum says this project was harder than anything he'd worked on before. "It was the day-in and day-out of constant death โ€” homicides, accidental deaths, drug overdoses or suicides," he tells Axios.

  • "Suicides were the worst. I will never shake those."
A man handcuffed in the back of a police car
A suspect in the back of a police car.

Go deeper: Check out Texas Monthly's coverage of Sharum's work, with an introduction by Bill Shapiro, the former editor-in-chief of LIFE magazine.

What's next: Sharum's book, "American Homicide," will be published in 2025, by Gost Books.

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2. ๐Ÿ˜ Mapped: Texans are buying homes later in life

Age when the majority of residents are homeowners, 2021
Data: Adapted from a Terner Center report; Map: Axios Visuals

New Texas homeowners are getting older.

  • The majority of Texas homeowners bought their first house by age 37, according to a recent University of California, Berkeley study.

Why it matters: For young people especially, homeownership is increasingly out of reach, Axios' Brianna Crane reports.

By the numbers: In 1980, most Texans became homeowners by age 29, per the same study.

  • That age was 34 in 2000, per the study.

What's happening: Median U.S. home values have nearly doubled in the last decade. Meanwhile, household incomes have only grown by roughly 13.5% during that same period.

Zoom out: Across the U.S., first-time buyers are on average anywhere from two to 17 years older than in 1980.

Go deeper: 38% of young buyers use family money for down payments

3. ๐Ÿค  Our new Instagram account

We want to make Texans feel more Texan. Photo: Greg Castillo/Axios

๐Ÿ‘‹ Hi! Greg Castillo here. I'm the new social video host on the Axios Texas team.

The big picture: We want to tell uniquely Texan stories through the new @AxiosTexas Instagram account, answering questions like:

  • Where do locals actually eat barbecue?
  • When is Beyoncรฉ dropping new music?
  • What's the most valuable artwork in a Texas museum?

The intrigue: I worked with Tasha and Naheed many years ago as an intern at the Dallas Morning News, and worked as a content creator at the Dallas Museum of Art and Perot Museum before joining Axios.

  • I've been an Axios Dallas reader for a long time, so I'm thrilled to be your social host from the other side.

๐Ÿ“ญ Have an idea for our Instagram account? Reply to this email to tell us what you want to see!

4. ๐Ÿ—ž Burnt ends: Bite-sized news bits

Don't be a neigh-sayer. Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

๐Ÿซ A Keller ISD trustee resigned over the weekend after parents complained about a film crew that was brought into a school and filmed students without families' knowledge or consent. (DMN)

๐Ÿšจ A student who allegedly brought a gun into a Mesquite charter school is in the hospital after being shot by police. (FOX4)

๐ŸŽข Six Flags Over Texas announced a series of improvements coming to the park for its 2024 season, including a new ride, Sylvester and Tweety Pounce and Bounce, which will lift riders 41 feet into the air before a series of downward pounces and upward bounces. (WFAA)

๐Ÿš” Wylie police charged a Garland man with murder in connection with a deadly fentanyl overdose last month โ€” the second time in a week that local police have charged someone with murder in connection with an overdose death. (KERA)

๐Ÿ’ฌ Quote du jour:

"I was always in love with Texas. When I was a little kid I guess, movies and things, I just always knew that someday I would go to Texas."
โ€” Legendary NBC5 reporter Bobbie Wygant on why she came to the state. Wygant died on Sunday. She was 97.

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๐Ÿ’ผ See who's hiring around the city.

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5. ๐ŸŒฎ One taco to go: Hickory

There are three tacos in there. Photo: Courtesy of Cormac West

This week's Taco Tuesday taste test takes us to chef Kent Rathbun's outpost in DFW's Terminal B.

  • Not long ago we told you about Cousins in the same terminal. Hickory is only a few gates down from there.

What to order: Brisket tacos.

Where: Hickory, Terminal B at DFW International Airport โ€” close to Gate 25.

Cost: $20 for three tacos and a side.

Pro tip: Hickory's decadent mac and cheese is one of the tastiest treats in that terminal.

Six-word review: Copious crunchy toppings mask meh meat.

๐Ÿค” Know a great taco we should try? Hit reply and let us know.

This newsletter was edited by Bob Gee and copy edited by Nicole Ortiz.

Our picks:

โšพ Mike is reading about the Rockwall-Heath alum who's the New York Mets' No. 1 prospect.

๐ŸŒ Tasha is browsing this list to plan her next international trip.

๐ŸŽญ Naheed is glad Jason Kelce is willing to return his luchador mask from the Super Bowl afterparties to its rightful owner: a young Chiefs fan from Dallas.

Like our prospects? Refer your friends to Axios Dallas, and get cool merch like stickers, totes, hats, T-shirts and more!