MPD: Arrest made in Homicide of Neil Michael Godleski in Sherman Circle

Neil Godleski was the Catholic University student murdered at Sherman Circle Aug. 22. From MPD:

“On Wednesday, September 22, 2010, and arrest was made of a juvenile male who was charged with First Degree Felony Murder while Armed pursuant to a DC Superior Court arrest warrant charging him as an adult for the shooting death of Neil Godleski.

Thanks to the members of the Homicide Branch for their tireless work on this case and thanks to the community for your support.”

71 Comment

  • Awesome! Much praise to whomever led the investigation. (And is it to “whomever” to “whoever”, given the object becomes the subject?)

  • +1 on the praise.

    Have no idea on the grammar.

  • great news. does MPD release the names of juveniles when charged as adults in felonies?

  • I bet those RACIST polica arrested an innocent black man!

  • YAYYYY!!!! I was starting to lose hope.

  • What on earth possessed this kid to do this? What a shame.

    We need to come together, as a community, and work out a real plan to get guns out of the hands of our youth. I’m not suggesting I know a solution, but I’m hard-pressed to believe there’s nothing we can do. For example, we need a much larger police presence throughout the city, harsher penalties for youth weapons violations, and stricter enforcement. This sort of nonsense can not be tolerated.

    • settle down hippie

    • i was called for Jury duty a few years ago.

      It was a weapons possession case, and we were talking about seating a jury to go to trial like 14 months after the incident happened.

      Taking things seriously enough to confront them quickly is maybe a first step?

    • The “real plan” would have been to send Phil Mendelson packing a couple of weeks ago. No such luck. With Mendelson still the Chair of the Public Safety Committee (no irony there), the is ZERO chance this city will seriously handle gun possession cases before they become murder cases. It’s just not a priority compared to cow-towing to the mothers, aunties, and grandmothers of these hoods who repeatedly whoosh through the revolving doors down at Judiciary Square.

      Don’t kid yourself, any idea of seriously tackling gun possession and use in DC will be met with wails of “racism” and quickly forgotten by the useless cowards, like Mendelson, who decide policy for the rest of us.

      Don’t kid yourself, any idea of seriously tackling gun possession and use in DC will be met with wails of “racism” and quickly forgotten by the useless cowards, like Mendelson, who decide policy for the rest of us.

      • Exactly.


        More to the point, none of our elected officials live in bad neighborhoods, and none certainly bike/walk through bad areas late at night. As far as they’re concerned these problems don’t exist, and the rest of us are at fault for living in bad areas. Its twisted to talk to the council/mayor staff about all this, such a reality gap.

  • I Bet POP wont give the murder of Ashley McRae as much attention as this one….I’m sure some of the readers will assume she was a gang member and probably deserved it.

    • PoP, have you ever thought about requesting that all commenters use some kind of unique nickname for their posts? There are too many “Anonymous” posts.

      And no, I don’t think McRae was a “gang member” who “deserved it” and don’t know why you would insult PoP readers by suggesting all of us assume anything.

      • I don’t think nicknames would help us commenters, since people can change their nickname at will from comment to comment. However, it would at least make it easy for PoP to banish someone who is continually way out of line. With unregistered commenters, you can only target the originating IP address of the request.

        That said, it is hard to distinguish the Anonymouseseses from each other, and some are perpetual assholes, while some are not.

        • It may say anonymous but Mr. POP knows or can know, I believe, the source of all emails. You can prevent comments from coming from designated computers.
          Short of banning people perhaps a little comment policy should be posted and occasionally pointed out when needed.

          • Agreed, you can know the IP address of the user and block that, but this could also end up blocking everybody on a corporate network due to the use of proxys and firewalls. Also, you can enter any email you want into the form – it does not validate that it is a real email address.

          • I wasn’t suggesting that PoP block commenters – but I think there is something to be said for requiring people to post with consistent “handles” to create some sense of accountability for what you say.

            No one here knows who I am, but I certainly think twice about what I post.

            Of course there is always a way around any system, but maybe at least suggesting that participants be held a bit accountable…

            But, of course, not my blog.

          • @JenDC – Well, at least we stayed relatively close to your original comment. On other occasions, by this point you would be labeled a racist. 🙂

    • Why don’t you start your own blog instead of ripping on PoP? It’s his blog and he chooses the content.

  • PoP, there was also an message on the MPD-4D listserve about yesterday’s shooting on Randolph St. 2 juveniles, a 15 yr old and a 17 yr old, were arrested on Quincy St (found by a K9 unit)and the guns recovered. Lots of juvenile crime going on around here – hope the arrest of these 3 teens calms things down around here. (? though i do wonder if one of them might have been involved in the shooting at Sherman Circle?)

    • I was surprised I didn’t find any mention of this on PoP this morning. The police were on Randolph and in our alley back and forth the whole evening. Seems the kiddos started shooting around 5 pm, seriously a bit early for that stuff.

      • what block of randolph was this?

        • Prince Of Petworth

          From MPD:

          “This evening at approximately 5:30 in the 400 block of Randolph Street NW Fourth District units received a call for the Sound of Gunshots. It was reported that subjects on foot as well as subjects inside of a black colored vehicle were shooting at each other. MPD immediately responded to the area to canvass for the subjects involved. Additional calls to 911 by citizens led units to the 500 block of Quincy St NW where two subjects involved were said to be hiding. MPD K-9 units were called to the scene to assist with finding the subjects.

          The subjects were apprehended by MPD K-9 units and two guns were recovered. Arrested were a 15 and 17 year old male.

          Through the coordinated efforts of the Fourth District officers, the community and MPD K-9 two violent offenders have been removed from our streets. Sergeant Brandon Green of the Fourth District displayed outstanding leadership by taking charge off the scene where the subjects were hiding.

          Thank you to all those involved who made these arrests possible.”

          • To anyone in 4D who cares I’d recommend following up with MPD to determine if the youths were held. If no one was hit by the gunfire the charges are vastly less and the kids generally released rather quickly. You can write to the 4D Commander and request this information. Its probably too late to file a Community Impact Statement requesting they be held but you can ask.

          • Freakin’ amazing, the kids around here run around with guns terrorizing this city, just plain sucks. The cops arrest them, DYRS and the courts let them back out, no one knows who they are. They know they can get away with the violence, over and over again, and it shows. Just a tragedy and a total national disgrace. Where is Obama’s leadership on this? Time for him to call for juvenile justice reform, this is all happening blocks from his House.

          • SOYPT: Obamas leadership? What, are you a child? DC has been an unrepresented federal colony for over 200 years, Obamas leadership like all his predecessors on the issue has been easy neglect. We’re the hole in the Constitution and utterly unimportant to him and the rest of the feds. If you do nothing else learn a little about DC governance.

      • Prince Of Petworth

        Sorry I tweeted all about this yesterday. You can follow me on twitter @PoPville

    • I thought all this crap was suppose to die down when school/fall started….

  • If he is a juvenile “charged” as an adult, then he is an adult for legal purposes. So, why don’t we have his name?
    Juveniles names are not usually published. Adults do not enjoy this practice.

    • bfinpetworth

      Probably not until there is a hearing to determine if he was properly charged as an adult. Due process.

    • I believe there still has to be a court ruling in order for the case to be brought against the defendant as an adult. Until a judge allows things to proceed, don’t expect a name.

  • Yay, great news, yet sad at the same time. A murder and a life destroyed by taking the path of crime. How do you reach these kids before they wreak havoc? It’s like we need “Quantum Leap” police force to save people from themselves.

  • I’m glad they have a suspect and I hope the McRae case proceeds just as fast. I’m not sure how the community impact statement process works (how do you ask to give one? do you have to wait for sentencing?) but MPD should be able to point anyone who’s interested in the right direction.

  • Someone who is a better lawyer that I am: the juvenile listed above is being charged with “Felony Murder while Armed.”

    Is the “Felony Murder” (as opposed to plain Murder) an indication that the police aren’t sure that the juvenile was the shooter (but have enough evidence to suggest that he was still involved in committing a related felony)?

    • Bear

      Felony Murder Doctrine

      “A rule of criminal statutes that any death which occurs during the commission of a felony is first degree murder, and all participants in that felony or attempted felony can be charged with and found guilty of murder. A typical example is a robbery involving more than one criminal, in which one of them shoots, beats to death or runs over a store clerk, killing the clerk. Even if the death were accidental, all of the participants can be found guilty of felony murder, including those who did no harm, had no gun, and/or did not intend to hurt anyone. In a bizarre situation, if one of the holdup men or women is killed, his/her fellow robbers can be charged with murder.”

    • It’s a felony murder b/c, probably, they believe they can prove the murder was committed in the course of another felony, like robbery. It doesn’t necessarily mean another defendant is involved.

      • It’s a felony murder because there is a lower mental state requirement, so it is easier to get a conviction. With a regular murder charge, they have to show intent to kill (or serious bodily injury, etc). With felony murder, the intent required is the intent to commit the felony (i.e., the robbery). The essence of the felony murder doctrine (stated above) is that an unlawful killing committed in the course of another felony (i.e., robbery), can be charged as a murder EVEN THOUGH there may not have been intent to kill (just intent to rob).

        Intent to kill is notoriously hard to prove. Robbery less so.

  • Wow, that’s fantastic that they made an arrest. I wonder how they caught him, especially considering that it seemed like such a random thing? Anyone who knows more about police work or this case than I do, feel free to chime in.

    If he just randomly shot and killed him and didn’t tell anyone, I wonder the ways that they could catch him.

    • My guess is the shooter is a known thug in the area and the investigation is largely a process of getting his friends to roll on him until MPD finds concrete evidence (ie victims possessions). These kids often have significant histories already and their lifestyle dictates they be conspicuous, which is why these crimes can be avoided if we had law enforcement reform in DC, which is a far off dream it seems.

      • Exactly. It’ll be really interesting to find out this kid’s history – keep your eyes on Colby King’s column in the Post.

        Sadly, it’ll likely be the same litany of petty to more serious offenses completely mishandled by DYRS. A shame for everyone involved, and the result of a system broken beyond measure.

        Vinny Schiraldi should be drug back from NYC and publically beaten for what he’s done to DYRS and this city.

  • All criminals boast about their crimes. I’m glad this little bastard was snatched off the streets.

  • Thanks for posting Dan … Neil’s family is in town this week for their son’s memorial mass and they couldn’t have received better news. Here’s hoping MPD continues the good work for all the others who’ve been taken from us too soon.

  • The suspect has been named on the WPost website:

    A police official identified the suspect as Eric Foreman, of Northeast Washington, who turns 17 this month. He has been charged as an adult with first-degree murder. Details of the crime are contained in court documents that will become public after Foreman’s initial appearance in D.C. Superior Court, set for late Thursday afternoon.

  • Possibly, MPD shut down a thriving illegal drug market. The lack of money coming in will coax the information out.MPD does it all the time.

    • Right on, need some pro-bono attorneys willing to get paid in the blood of innocents.

      We should get photos of all the kids and see how far the line would stretch around the City Council building.

      Who gave these kids the guns and ammo? Who do they have on the inside Any RICO charges possible?

      So you’re saying the criminal enterprise gave up the kid to take the fall so they could get their cops to let them reopen for business? Or are all these well-equipped drug/gun/prostitution operations run by managers under 17/18?

  • I forgot to mention that also a little reward money will do the trick as well.

  • Come on now folks, how about a change in our DC juvenile crime policies? We deserve to know who this kid is, what other kids were involved, where they live, what crew they are in, what school they attend. (especially since DYRS will let him out in short order and he’ll be roaming our streets again packing a handgun within years if not months). This sanctioned veil of secrecy on behalf of the well armed youth militia in this city has got to stop. Peace March NOW, demand the violent youth offender registry. Fenty, Gray, Bowser, Graham, Mendelson, you ready to be better leaders?

    • They are not ready and Gray, in particular, is going to be VERY lax on criminals because of how Mayor Barry ran his campaign with the grandmothers of these criminals “delivering” precincts for him. This is Mayor Barry’s puppet mayor and we will see Barry-style results.

  • Glad they named him and he’s being treated as an adult. About freakin’ time. Any information on his buddies?

  • Time for some high powered lawyers from Connecticut to file a civil suit against the District for failure to control its violent juvenile population, and aiding and abetting violent youth gangs involved in organized crime. And, hope the kid gets the death penalty too.

  • You can keep hoping as there is no capital punishment in DC and there never will be. It is also unlikely that this poor deprived boy will get more than 20-25 years in prison (out in 10) – assuming that the US Atty’s Office can even secure a conviction. And don’t count on that. Recent multiple murderers in DC have received sentences as short as 30 and 40 years (out in 20 or less). Wake up to the reality of living in DC. One cat shot down 5 people, in separate incidents, and got 40 years about six weeks ago from the sympathetic Obama-appointed judge.

  • I’m glad they made this arrest. Hopefully, justice will be served…although none of it is going to bring Neil back 🙁


  • Anyone have an update on the trial for Mr. Forman? In related news, what is going on in this world that we have this…

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