The Blotter: ‘I’m Held Hostage in My Own Home’
My Name Is —, I'll Be Your Mugger: A woman was walking eastbound in the 1700 block of T Street NW at about midnight on March 6 when a man she didn't know said hello. The man asked her name, then gave his. He then forced her to the ground and yanked her purse away. He fled through an alley.
'Scuse Me, Guvna: A guy told police he was getting onto a Metrobus in the 2200 block of Pennsylvania Avenue NW when two men bumped into him. When he got home, he realized his wallet was missing. The man concluded one of the bumpers slipped the item from his coat pocket.
I Think I Can, I Know I Can: A man wanted to score some dough. Police say that the cash-seeker "entered the Bank of America located at 401 M Street, SW, and attempted to rob the bank" around 10 a.m. on March 4. Though police haven't specified why, he failed. Later, the would-be Dillinger displayed a go-getter attitude by trying again. At about 1:30, he entered the BB&T bank at 1801 Adams Mill Road NW and" attempted to rob that bank as well." He failed again.
Hostage Situation: An Metropolitan Police Department listserv poster identifying himself as Steven Conn on March 7 declares that the 300 block of W Street NE, where he lives, is being "held hostage on a daily basis." "Everyday I call to have Residential Parking Permit enforced to try and get them off my block, but it's not working," Conn writes. And just who is besieging Conn's homestead? A horde of loiterers and drug peddlers, he claims.
"Attached is a picture I snapped out my upstairs window of the 14 loiterers perched on my fence, immediately in front of the house, and there were countless others up and down the 300 block of W Street NE last night, 06MAR10. My other concerned neighbor and I had to call 911 several times last night. Although the loiterers are dispersed, they always re-congregate after the police cruisers leave the block."
Conn asks 5th District Commander Lamar D. Greene to help by dispatching cops and police light towers to the street, in hopes the stepped-up presence will chase off the loafers—the same way the loafers chased off Conn's friends the night he and his neighbor kept calling 911:
"Dinner guests due to join me in my home canceled when they drove up. I wouldn't get out of my car either. In turn, I'm held hostage in my own home. I am absolutely ashamed to live in this community. There is NOWAY this type of behavior would be tolerated in other parts of D.C."
Greene said: "Steve we will continue to rotate the light tower through the area and vice officers will come through as well. The beat officers will spend more time in the block and continue to move the subjects on, please keep me informed about any suspicious observations as you have done in the past."
Responding to Greene, Conn sounds like he's been abandoned at the Alamo:
"My neighbor Janice gave up the fight a little over a year ago, and last fall my neighbor Angela had to move out of her house as well. Now there are only two households left (myself and my neighbor). If dinner guests can't even feel safe enough to get out of their cars and come into my home, we're at an all time low – and it's only getting worse – especially if it's already this bad before it's warm out."
Asked to clarify his "only two households left" remark (are the other homes on W Street abandoned, we wondered), Conn says via email that while there are other houses on the block, he and his neighbor are the only ones left willing to "fight" for it. There were four activist households before, he says.
"So when I say there are only two of us left, I mean my neighbor and I are the only ones sticking in our homes, battling the trouble homes that harbor a lot of our problems (there are about 9 row houses on the 300 block of W St NE)."
Two out of nine? Good luck with that.
Source: MPD District listservs