Props to the Cops and Heads Up for Bloomingdale

“Dear PoPville,

I wanted to relay an incident that happened to my daughter this morning [Sunday] on Rhode Island Ave just past N Capitol. The two of us were walking down Rhode Island Ave around 8:00 am enroute to a yoga class (carrying only non threatening yoga mats). We were walking behind a male (late 20’s). There were 4 other males standing on the bridge by N Capitol St. The man in front of us stopped and we walked by. We continued past the other lane of N Capitol and I could hear someone coming up behind us. Just as I was about to turn around, the guy we had been walking behind ran up and smacked my daughter on the side of her face and knocked her into the street and then walked down N Cap St. (the other guys on the corner did NOTHING to assist) Neither one of us had a phone (a rarity!) so we borrowed a phone as soon as we could and called 911.

While we were in front the yoga studio waiting for police to arrive, the guy came down to the corner of RI Ave and 1st street, saw my daughter and yelled some insanity at her and then walked down RI Ave. The police came about 15 seconds later and apprehended the guy. Fortunately, my daughter was not seriously injured (swollen lip, cut about her eye from her glasses), but we were both very shaken up. Clearly the guy has mental issues, but it was terrifying nonetheless. I wanted to commend the DC police for their quick action and compassion towards my daughter and stress the importance of calling 911 should anyone witness or be involved in an assault like this. Hopefully this disturbed individual will be off the streets for a good while and/or get the help he needs.

But I really wanted to share how quickly and compassionately police responded and how important it is to call 911 to get the disturbed off the street. And always be aware of your surroundings.”

14 Comment

  • Accountering

    So glad to hear you all are okay, and that they caught the guy. Here is hoping MPD can make this one stick. I understand people with mental issues, but unprovoked assault is never okay.

  • Wow. I’m glad that you’re okay. Sounds like that man has some serious mental issues.

  • Any chance it was this cray cray reported down at 11th & Rhode Island not too long ago?

  • Glad you’re alright.

    Hopefully they don’t let that guy out on the street again. But, unfortunately, I am not optimistic.

  • Ryan2499–that was not the guy, but thanks for reposting that photo!

  • Jesus. The mentally ill man is one thing, but I can’t believe neither of those presumably sound-minded men on the corner tried to help or involve themselves in the situation at all.

    • Really? This sounds like horrible situation, and I hope that the OP and her daughter recover quickly. But — and I say this as a woman — I can imagine a lot of scenarios in which people would not rush to the assistance of someone, just because the crisis is in eyeshot. And unless you and everyone you know would always help anyone and everyone within your vicinity who appeared to be in distress, you can imagine it too. I’m glad that the OP was able to contact the police, that the police came quickly, and that the guy who assaulted them was apprehended.

    • Well, believe it. My boyfriend was mugged at the corner of 14th/Fairmont two years ago at 9:00 pm. There were tons of people on the street who could’ve, at the very least, called an ambulance or the cops (the assailants stabbed him in the face), but they didn’t. He actually had to hail his own cab, while holding his shirt over his stab wound to try and stop the blood from gushing out.

      After that happened, I pretty much lost any hope that if I were in a similar situation, anyone would bother to help.

      • I’m so sorry that happened to your boyfriend. I can assure you, at least, that I’d most certainly call or try to assist if I witnessed something like that. I think most decent folks would. Hope that’s the last awful encounter he has to deal with!

      • Quick story – Friday evening Downtown I saw a white guy fall hard off his bike on the sidewalk coming in my direction. I stay back initially because he had a large dog (lean, muscular breed w/ large jaw.) He was having trouble getting up because he was sorta tangled in his bike and pinned against the low fence he fell into. I ease up to the scene making sure the dog was not going to get aggressive and defend his owner. The dog stays cool I lift the bike off of the guy etc. Maybe the guy was disoriented but I did not get the impression he wanted my help. At the same time another cyclist was riding up the street and sees me holding the guys bike while he is getting up off of the ground. In that moment he sees a black guy holding a white guy’s bike while white guy is on the ground looking hurt. I become very aware of how this looks. I have children if the police drove up what would they see or think they see? What could happen? Here I am helping the guy and I start to feel uncomfortable.

        Anyway, I’ll keep this brief. I ask the guy two or three more times and he says he is ok. I hand him his bike and head down the block and turn on 7th street. I look back and from what I saw he appeared to be accepting assistance from the white cyclist who had circled back. I don’t regret helping the guy, actually if I did not help him my evening and weekend would have been ruined because I would have felt ashamed for not helping him but I don’t judge people to harshly who opt not to get involved.

  • I’m glad to hear about the quick response I’d advise you however to keep pressure on the police to actually prosecute the guy. The follow through rate on that appears to be low in my personal experience.

  • I’m so sorry you and your daughter went through this. My well wishes for a speedy recovery.

    Could you please provide a description of the individual?

  • I was also assaulted my a man that had been roaming the North Cap/Shaw areas for a very long time. He ran up to me and threw a boot (yes a boot) square in my face then pushed me into traffic.

    A black eye and bruised sense of security later, the cops have still yet to apprehend him

  • Very sorry to hear what happened, and I am glad the cops found the guy. I hope they actually followup on the charges. You really do have to be careful when you walk around dc – its not unusual to see people walking around, who look or act unstable. In fact, you don’t even have to leave your house to do it! I live in shaw, and a few weeks ago, i had a homeless man who decided to set up shop under my front door, next to the basement entrance one day. I found him loitering there 3 times in one day and threw him out each time. It’s only after i threatened to call the police the last time did he finally NOT come back again. He was a really big guy and he looked like he was high on something- pretty scary.

Comments are closed.