Hate Crime and Robbery Being Investigated in Adams Morgan

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The Washington Post reported Sunday morning:

“A Bethesda man was beaten and robbed early Saturday morning in Adams Morgan by three men who yelled, “This is for Trayvon Martin,” before attacking him, police said.”

They say the incident took place in the 1700 block of Euclid Street NW around 1:30 a.m. Saturday. The police say they have not seen a pattern here so hopefully this is a horrible isolated incident.

73 Comment

  • gotryit

    Great. I’m sure Trayvon would love perpetuating racism. Idiots.

    • These assholes would have beat Trayvon up and taken his Beats or iPhone.

      They need to get his name out of their mouths.

  • Dr. Carol Swain is paying attention. Random mob beatings of a lone citizen should not be welcomed by civil society.

  • So if they hadn’t yelled “This is for Trayvon” it wouldn’t have been a hate crime?

    • Correct!!! By using Trayvon’s name it implies that they attacked him because of the circumstances of the case/trail!!! Just like if you were to attack someone for being gay and you first say “I going to beat your f_ggot ass”!!! The police can charge you with a hate crime!!!

    • Well, it may have been a hate crime, but how would you prove it? That statement about Trayvon is a pretty good indication that it’s a hate crime.

    • yes. words have power like that. use them wisely.

    • Yup. That’s how it works. If you’re attacking someone and victimizing them based on race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, etc. then it’s a hate crime. Got a problem with it?

  • I’m not sure that there’s any benefit to creating a special category of crimes for when the perpetrator really hates the victim, as opposed to those crimes where the perpetrator is merely psychopathically indifferent to the victim. And the downside is silly judicial results, like enhanced penalties merely because of the attacker’s choice of words while they were bashing the victim’s skull in.

    If the attackers had instead shouted “we respect diversity in the community”, would it have been less of a crime?

    • why should it matter if you’re sure or not?

    • Consider these two scenarios:

      1. A person is murdered during a robbery or a dispute.

      2. The KKK publicly hangs a black person.

      Don’t get me wrong, murder on its own is terrible. But the second is an act of terrorism against an entire race and should be treated more harshly. It goes beyond the simple act of the crime.

      • “Expaining hate crimes for Dummies”. Well done.

      • But there is no “terrorism element” included in hate crime laws. The salient fact is always whether the crime was committed because the victim was of a certain race, sexual orientation, etc. so using your comparison, if a robber decided to kill his victim because he despised the victim’s race, then that too would be a hate crime. The idea that the crime “terrorizes an entire race” is not derived from law.

        • “Terrorism: The use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.”

          “Hate crime: A crime motivated by racial, sexual, or other prejudice, typically one involving violence.”

          I’m not a lawyer or judge, so all I’m saying is that this is the reason I support hate crime laws. I think of it as the use of violence and intimidation in the persuit of prejudicial aims. That doesn’t seem like a big jump of logic to me to compare it to terrorism – just not a purely political aim.

          • I think his/her point was that your example was an extreme case (KKK public hanging). In reality, people are charged with hate crimes when things are not so extreme. Why does robbing/beating someone after yelling “this is for Trayvon” make a crime worse than robbing/beating someone without yelling that statement. The motive behind the crime may be different, but the result is the same, and both are tragic. I don’t necessarily see a problem with elevating the punishment for a hate crime such as the KKK hanging you describe, but when things are less extreme, I am not sure it warrants the additional penalties based on the perpetrator orally stating his or her motive. Unfortunately, the laws don’t make that distinction.

          • What’s the additional penalty for a hate crime – simple assault / robbery vs. the additional penalty for a hate crime – murder? I don’t think they’re the same even though the label is the same.

          • I think in D.C. it is a maximum of 1.5 times the max sentence for whatever bias-based crime is committed, so this equates to a different penalty due to the different maximum sentences between criminal offenses, but it is weighted the same.

    • there are definitely some arguments for eliminating hate crimes as a prosecutorial tool, but if you’re interested in reforming the legal system, this would be like #455 on the list.

    • Your lack of understanding on hate crimes is astounding. Hate crimes are a attack on a person meant to put fear into that person and a community at large.

  • LMAO!
    For real, this case is really depressing. Can’t we just move on? And how would robbing some guy have anything to do for getting justice? Ugh, the idiots in this town.

    • The people that did this come from a world where an eye for an eye is the only form of protest they know

      • I can’t honestly imagine that this was done to appease the injustice in Martin’s case. My guess is that dudes decided to go rob a mo’ker, and one of them stupidly yelled out this blurb about getting revenge for Martin as he took out his aggression on the random victim.

  • Regardless of what the victim claimed was said during the attack, how can it be proven? I don’t doubt the victim’s story, but telling police that your attackers mentioned the trial would be a surefire way to get the investigation a higher priority.

    My attackers yelled racial epithets at me when I was jumped in Adams Morgan last year. Maybe if I mentioned that to the police, they would have filed a police report.

    • Why are you people hung up on proving a racial motivation? Don’t you understand that courts determine all manner of facts, and that in criminal court these facts almost always include intent?

      • excuse me… what exactly do you mean by “you people”? also, your questions are unclear: “courts determine facts, and that includes intent. so why does anyone care about intent?”. not questioning your legal experience. just unsure what your point is. this comment was written on a phone

        • In this context I understood “you people” to mean people who are hung up on proving a racial motivation. What did you think it meant?

        • He probably meant “you people in this thread” twit. (Insult added)

        • It seemed perfectly clear to me. Previous comments suggested that proving a racist intent is far-fetched. But intent is an element of almost every crime, so for a criminal jury determine whether a defendant’s criminal intent was racist in nature is not so unusual.

        • What’s a “smugler”?

  • 1700 block of Euclid has a long and shady resume, but I believe this is its first hate crime!

    • I agree! I live at 17th and Euclid and I can guarantee this is not an isolated incident. A cab driver was shot outside of our house earlier this year. There is (usually) a police car posted up with flood lights on weekend nights at the intersection. Where were they Saturday night?

      It’s very disheartening that I moved from the notorious Columbia Heights, where I never felt frightened walking home, to a much nicer location where I’m terrified to walk my dog at night.

      • Perhaps, the reason is because it is not actually a much nicer location… It is well-chronicled that 17th and Euclid has been a bad spot for years (the Bennett family and their cohorts have made the news on more than one occasion). Neighborhoods are often block-to-block and this is a situation where 17th and Euclid is a bad block in a decent neighborhood.

        • Lol. It’s now only one house. The rest of the block is very nice and attractive. The cab shooting was by the HT, not on Euclid.

        • The cab shooting aside (which woke me in the middle of the night with sirens and helicopters flying above, regardless of the specific geography), Euclid and 17th appeared to be a better location to me than my previous spot at 14th and Columbia. I guess I should have researched more.

          • I lived in the 1700 block of Euclid in 1992 and moved because the then active open-air drug scene was gutsy enough to post lookouts at every corner. It’s much better now but the corner of 17th and Euclid still has it moments and bears clear signs something is different there.

            It’s a great location, apparently for the good and bad of a city.

    • long live the Bennetts…
      ….also, anyone see the Trayvon graffiti on the Exxon station that’s getting torn down…that’s a super constructive way to get your message out folks…

  • Why was this story buried in the Local section of WaPo when it implicates the ongoing national race discussion?

  • Stupid meatheads were looking for someone to rob anyway….now one of their big mouths added a hate crime charge to it.

  • The right wing blogs love stories like this. Not suprisingly the WP story is featured on World Nut Daily today.

    • The right wing blogs? So it’s OK that the NYT and the whole US media made hay (and ad $) with the Trayvon / Zimmerman mess, but somehow it’s “right wing” to note a reported hate crime right here in Adams Morgan?

      And, as someone else asked, why does the Post bury it in local news?

    • If you’re suggesting that interest in this incident among right-wingers means the rest of us should ignore it, then I strongly disagree. Anyone who opposes racism and racist violence on principle (rather than racism against one group) should be concerned about this.

  • Disregard what the cops and Jim Graham say about the weekly events on Euclid St.

    PSA: Avoid Euclid St. at all cost, regardless of whether it’s daytime or night. If you’ve spent a year in DC or 30 you know that folks get beaten, shot, and killed on that stretch ALL THE TIME. Its a fact. And the city (cops and city council) have done nothing to stop it.

    This IS NOT AN ISOLATED incident.

    • Give me a break. I have walked down this block at least once a week for the past 4 years. I in fact missed this by about 20 minutes Friday night. Yes, every few months something like this happens. It is almost always between 1 and 4 am. Can’t remember the last time something occurred during daylight hours. Have you even been around here recently?? I doubt it.

      • No, I haven’t been around Euclid in a while because, as I stated above – to do so is ill-advised/stupid. But I’ve lived here between 1 and 30 years, so I know better.

        And if I was wrong (I’m not, just check the MPD figures) about the “weekly” stuff (i.e. beatings, shootings, killings) happening there I assume you agree that it’s happening too frequently (“Yes, every few months something like this happens.”).

        And so the point isn’t lost on folks, “something like this” = a beating (at a minimum). But if you don’t believe me join Anon 11:17 for a pleasant stroll down Euclid day or night.

        • so according to the MPD’s crime map, in the past year, on the 1600-1700 blocks of Euclid there were:

          1 robbery
          1 armed robbery
          (2 in total)

          1 assualt w/out weapon
          1 assaut w/weapon
          (2 in total)

          4 violent crimes in the past 12 months on those two blocks.

          Does that sound weekly to you? I think not. If you were to include the streets around it, you’d average about one per month, 1/4 of which were at Kalorama and 17th. Perhaps that is the area to avoid…

          • Those are only reported crimes, no?

          • So on a two block stretch of Euclid there have been 4 violent (i.e VIOLENT) crimes in the past 12 months. And immediately around all the serious stuff goes down.

            Again, so not all of Euclid, just 2 blocks.

            So all the rest of Euclid is safe-zone. Yes?

          • @3:26, I didn’t look at the rest of Euclid, just this neighborhood (ie up to 16th). The “PSA” was asserting all kinds of bad stuff happened here, I was trying to illustrate otherwise. It seems clear that it is not the violent crime zone s/he made it out to be. Feel free to look at MPD’s crime map. You will see that it doesn’t stand out compared to many blocks in the area.

      • + 1

        I live on Euclid St (a couple blocks away). That specific corner is dicey, but overall, the street is no worse than any other street in CH.

  • Some friends and I got called some slurs and shoved around by some kids near 18th and Colubmia the night the GZ verdict got handed down. I got the sense it was related to the verdict but who knows. . This incident kinda fits the pattern I drew with my own experience.

  • I doubt this was actually a hate crime, as opposed to some idiots who wanted to mug someone for some cash and a phone and just ended up shouting something stupid that could get them extra charges. Stupid is as stupid does.

    But this is one reason gentrification has been so good to this city and other areas. Crime is overall considerably down in DC and as more middle class people move into urban areas, fewer and fewer people will be beaten for a few bucks or a cell phone.

    Overall, crime in DC is headed in the right direction and problem areas are becoming bright spots all the time.

    • So the middle class (the folks with jobs) are mostly responsible for these crimes? HA!

      • No, you’re reading it wrong. The influx of the middle class into DC is making less crime happen, largely as the underclass are pushed out of the city.

  • Not a pattern? As in not a hate-crime pattern per se? What about that corner in general? What about the shooting there just about a month ago (written about here)?

  • DC CapHill

    I don’t make much of a distinction with this case, as compared to any other robbery in this city where the victim is white, and therefore assumed to be carrying something of value; iPhone, wallet, etc.

    Does is make this any better or worse because they invoked Trayvon Martin, during the commission of a robbery and beating?

  • I thought Zimmerman was Hispanic?

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