The combined Police Service Area meeting for PSAs 404 & 407 was Thursday, August 27th. Alas, only three residents attended (including myself). The property manager, Yvette, from the apartments at 4100 Georgia Avenue attended, as did ANC 4C commissioner Galloway and PSA 404 Lieutenant Raul Figueras and 4D Commander Wilfredo Manlapaz. The new PSA manager for 407, Lieutenant Anthony Washington, was unfortunately not able to attend as it was his day off. I was looking forward to meeting the new LT.
It was rather quick meeting, primarily because it was so empty — granted, the meeting wasn’t widely communicated by ANC 4C or MPD, but it’s disappointing to see a lackluster attendance by both ANC commissioners and residents. People are busy, but at the least, 4C commissioners should be trying to attend (and ensure their constituents know about it). /rant
Lt. Figueras gave an update on the 30-day year-over-year comparison for crime in both PSAs.
PSA 404 has seen a 7% decrease in overall crime (while robberies are up 12% and property crime is down).
PSA 407 is up 26% overall, with a 0% change in robberies (4 so far). There have been 8 violent crimes and stolen auto (not theft from cars, but actual cars being stolen) is up 13%. Lt. Figueras mentioned a recent car theft on 15th and Allison St NW. A woman arrived home, parked her car and walked to her front door. Three men grabbed her, threw her against the door and stole her keys for her black BMW. They then went on to perpetrate 6-8 robberies in the area using the car. He mentioned that MPD was able to apprehend two of the suspects, and the car was recovered from the parking lot of the Piney Branch Safeway.
Lt. Figueras talked about robberies being a crime of opportunity, and made the same recommendation that MPD always makes: be aware of your surroundings and stop walking about staring at your phones. “Be careful walking around the street.”
Snatch and run robberies continue to be a problem. He gave on example of a recent “domestic robbery” where a jealous / angry boyfriend robbed his girlfriend (knocked her down and stole her purse).
Lt. Figueras also discussed crime along the 3700 block of 9th Street NW, where theft from auto continues to be an ongoing problem. “We know who’s doing it,” LT said. “But we have to catch them in the act.” He said there was an adult male who was using juveniles to break into cars and bring him back the property.
“A neighborhood watch is great,” Lt. Figueras said. “It doesn’t have to be organized. If you see something suspicious on your street, call 911. Don’t worry about bothering the police.” He gave an example of seeing a young man walking down the street stopping and looking in multiple cars. While that’s not illegal, it is suspicious. “Call 911,” Lt. Figueras said. “We’re not going to arrest them, but we can stop and talk to them, check them out. This gives the officers the chance to identify or know the people causing issues, and it tells them that hey, someone is watching me.”
Vann-Di Galloway asked about putting a police presence at Raymond Recreation Center, mainly due to the recent stabbing that occurred there and finding discarded packages of synthetic drugs. Commander Manlapaz said that the stabbing turned out to be an accident — two 13/14 year old juveniles were playing with a knife, the knife got thrown in the air and stabbed a boy in the leg.
The meeting wrapped up with the Commander repeating that residents shouldn’t leave bags or other valuables in cars. “Even if a bag is empty, a thief won’t know that and might break in just to see. If there’s nothing visible, it’s not worth his time,” Manalapaz said.
Meeting ended with a discussion of the next meeting being in October, and perhaps trying to schedule the meeting every other month instead of quarterly. Commander Manlapaz said they would try to do a better job of communicating about upcoming meetings.
You can read the notes from the last meeting in May.