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notes from the Eckington safety meeting with MPD

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  • Caroline Platt
    Hello,  As requested, here are my notes from the Eckington safety meeting we had on Thursday with MPD.  Thanks again to the many MPD officers and neighbors
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 3, 2012
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      Hello, 

      As requested, here are my notes from the Eckington safety meeting we had on Thursday with MPD.  Thanks again to the many MPD officers and neighbors who attended.  

      Best, 

      Caroline

      Caroline Platt
      Recording Secretary 
      Eckington Civic Association


      *************************

      Eckington Community Safety Meeting, May 31, 2012 -- Notes

      A community meeting regarding crime and safety was organized by Brooke Edgecombe (Vice President of the Eckington Civic Association) and ANC Commissioner Tim Clark in response to the recent uptick in crime, particularly burglaries from homes.  

      MPD came out in impressive force to meet the community, address concerns, give information and statistics, and give advice on how the community can work together to try to prevent more crime.  

      MPD representatives included: Chief Cathy Lanier, 5D Commander Andy Solberg, Captain Wilfredo Manlapaz, Lieutenant Ronald Wright, and Sergeants Haggerty (street crimes unit), Dorrough (biking unit), and Thornton (detectives).  Chief Lanier also brought a representative from the Office of the Attorney General, who prosecutes juveniles in the District.  (The vast majority of adult crimes in DC are prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.)

      Commander Solberg began with a review of recent burglary numbers in Eckington (and also mentioned our neighbors in Bloomingdale, which has been similarly hit).  MPD provided maps indicating that there were 11 burglaries in Eckington in April and 12 burglaries in Eckington in May.  (There were also several in Edgewood, which is part of the same MPD PSA as Eckington, though fewer than Eckington.)  

      Commander Solberg mentioned that the burglaries came in waves, of a sort.  There were several at the end of March/early April, then about one per week in early April, and in May there were a bunch in a short period of time -- 7 in one week!  He also noted that the past couple of weeks have been bad, with burglaries even occurring during the day on weekend days, which is unusual.  Year over year, burglaries in PSA 502 (which includes Eckington and Edgewood) are currently up 14%.

      The items taken, generally, are electronics (large and small) and bicycles.  Burglars sometimes use people’s trash cans to roll these items away from the house.  

      Commander Solberg indicated that there were 6 arrests in these burglary cases last week -- all of juveniles.  Because they are juveniles, the arrestees are not held pending trial, but they are under juvenile pretrial supervision.  

      Commander Solberg provided his email address: andrew.solberg@....  He noted that MPD cannot monitor every neighborhood listserv (such as this Eckington listserv) and he encouraged concerned residents to join the MPD 5D listserv, which the police monitor and to which they post LOTS of information.  They post lists of every reported crime and every arrest in daily reports.    Link to join on this webpage:  http://mpdc.dc.gov/mpdc/cwp/view,a,1239,q,545954,mpdcNav_GID,1538.asp

      MPD provided a couple of handouts at the meeting.  There was a green “Burglary Prevention Handout” as well as a white handout, the advice from which I will incorporate below.

      General advice and requests from MPD:

      If you see anything suspicious, PLEASE CALL 911.  Most burglary arrests come due to tips from concerned citizens.  SImilarly, if you hear a loud noise, please call 911 -- it may be someone breaking a window or kicking in a door.  Other examples of times to call 911:  

      • if you see people carrying electronics in alleys, esp. if those items are covered with blankets.
      • unfamiliar individuals or cars waiting around in the neighborhood
      • any unusual activity in alleys, stairwells, doorways (e.g. people pushing trash cans)
      • unexpected visitors knocking on your door asking for someone who doesn’t live there
      • if you hear any loud noises or glass breaking

      If you see persons under 18 years of age on the street during school hours, please call 911 -- they are truants who can be picked up and returned to school (at least until DCPS lets out for the summer later this month).  

      Record the serial numbers of your electronics and bicycles!  When MPD recovers items, they cannot release them unless there is evidence of ownership.  They have warehouses full of stuff that cannot be released.  (Taking photos of the serial numbers is fine -- just make sure that those photos aren’t all stored solely on the electronic items the burglars target.)

      Paint your address on your trash can.  

      If you are going on vacation and you would like MPD to keep an eye on your house, email Commander Solberg and Lieutenant Wright.  

      If you have any information about burglaries, please call 5D Detective Thomas Stein at 202.489.8086.

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