Authorities in Houston have announced an overnight curfew that will run from 12- 5 am to stamp out looting and armed robbery incidents that have started to emerge. The latest reports indicate that criminals impersonating Law Enforcement Officers have been victimizing residents especially in areas that have been the hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey [VIDEO]. Initially, the curfew had been set from 10 pm to 5 pm, but Mayor Sylvester Turner adjusted the time for the curfew to begin from midnight instead.

Arrests

So far there have been 14 arrests related to looting, but according to the Harris County Police Chief, Art Acevedo, the arrests are just the tip of the iceberg compared to the numerous reports have been trickling in, with more serious crimes committed and more arrests imminent.

An incensed Acevedo said that there had also been reports of armed robbers taking advantage of the current conditions and moving around victimizing the community. He added that the police would pursue the said robbers and bring them to justice.

Impersonation

Singled out were a group of criminals who were impersonating law enforcement officers while wearing branded t-shirts. This group is claiming to represent Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Homeland Security's Investigations Division. Police have sent out an alert to area residents to be on the lookout for these t-shirt wearing criminals and have reiterated that the said law enforcement officers do not normally wear t-shirts. The police have further urged the community to ask to see some ID, or if in doubt to call 911.

With the Houston Police Department [VIDEO] stretched to the last man, many area residents are finding themselves alone, and that is when the criminals are taking advantage of the situation.

Mayor's assurance

Mayor Turner assured the residents that they did not have to worry as law enforcement officers were on top of the situation and would safeguard the resident's property. The curfew, on the other hand, was to ensure that only accredited personnel were out at night to maintain law and order.

So far, Houston Police have been responsible for over 3,500 rescues since the storm began, but Police Chief Avecedo says that they will now be concentrating more on law enforcement. Potential looters have been warned to keep out of the state, and anybody arrested taking advantage of an already vulnerable community will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

So far, Hurricane Harvey has claimed 11 lives.