“residents of Hamilton Street would like to make sure our neighbors are aware of a recent mini crime wave”

“Dear PoPville,

The residents of Hamilton Street would like to make sure our neighbors are aware of a recent mini crime wave that is impact our community. Over the past several weeks we’ve experienced several burglaries in the vicinity of Hamilton/Gallatin/Ingraham Streets between 5th and 8th Streets NW. The burglaries occurred during day light hours–a neighbor came outside Tuesday morning around 9:30 am to witness two young men helping hoist each other up to the porch roof of another home and attempt to enter the home through the upper level windows. A family brand new to our block, living in a home with an alarm system, also experienced a forced entry and property was stolen from their residence.

I’ve lived on Hamilton Street since 2011 and cannot say more about how wonderful my community is. Many neighbors have lived on the street, and in the same homes, for their entire lives and cannot recall a time when there has been such a rash of property crime. It is not typical, and certainly not acceptable to any members of our community. Nothing about choosing to live in a city means that any of us should simply shake our heads when our neighbors are victims of crime.

Many residents of our area attended our local neighborhood meeting last night and asked to speak about the recent crime spurt and learn more about what we, and our city and law enforcement officers, can do to address this. We were told, however, that the entirety of the meeting would be devoted to discussing a new community center. While we all understand that it is important to speak to community services and recreation, the response to our concern over the recent spike in crime was frustrating and absolutely not what one would expect from our community leadership.

We will be circulating a letter of concern through the neighborhood, and directly speaking with our 4th District police, and hope to receive an improved response from our community leadership.”

29 Comment

  • That sucks. Hope the police catch the crooks and lock em up.

  • Good to see we’re using the phrase “crime wave” liberally these days.

  • The same thing happened to us this past Tuesday (Oct 7) on the 700 block of Webster St NW. Our neighbors witnesses three shady looking teenagers entering our backyard and then hoisting themselves up to the windows to try to enter. Luckily we have good neighbors who called the police immediately, so as soon as they pried the window open, the alarm went off and the police showed up so they ran away. It gave us a big scare because we just bought this house in May and felt very safe in this neighborhood. Unfortunately, it looks like from DC crime alerts that these same characters have been at it again in the days following our attempted robbery. I wish there was something we could do…

    • Sorry you had this experience.

      If it makes you feel better I’ve lived in the area (a couple of blocks from you) since 2004 and the only crime I’ve experienced (attempted or otherwise) was someone stealing an Amazon package (valued at $9) from my front porch.

      Hopefully these jokers get caught. Trying to break into the front of someone’s house during daylight hours isn’t terribly bright.

  • They often strike during the day because most law abiding folks are at work and homes are vacant. Sad they feel they can be that brash in the middle of the day.

    • I don’t know about your block, but my block has tons of law abiding folks at home during the day. My spouse works from home, we have multiple stay at home moms, graduate students, retired people, and people who work in medicine or retail management and have shifts other than 9-5. Sometimes I feel like a minority on my block with my 9-5 schedule 🙂

      I think they strike during the day based on poor assumptions about our neighborhood, which is why they keep getting spotted!

  • Accountering

    Shocking that they forced the meeting to follow through on speaking about a topic no one was there to speak about. Have you tried reaching out to Bowser about this? (Mostly so you can feel like you tried, not that should would do anything about it, besides offering to “bring everyone to the table to discuss a meeting to plan a time to review the issues”)

    • I am not a fan of the ANC Commissioners in this area, but to be fair, it was a special meeting called for the purpose of discussing the parks and recreation issues in the neighborhood. Many members of DPR and DGS were in attendance to speak and field questions. Pretty much everyone but the OP was there to discuss those issues, not crime.

  • What are you talking about when you say “community leadership?” Your ANC people? Your civic association leaders? You’re kind of vague on that. I’d suggest actually getting involved in leading the community so you can help set the agenda for your community meetings.

    • Accountering

      Community leadership = 4th district police – known to be likely the worst district for policing in the city, and Muriel Bowser = known to be the worst CM (save MB) yet is leading candidate for mayor, solely based on her party registration and the fact she isn’t as corrupt as the current mayor.

    • I’m assuming from the context that the OP meant his/her ANC reps, though I guess it’s possible it could be a neighborhood civic group instead.
      Is it really fair to suggest that the OP become an ANC rep (or similar) him/herself, though? Sure, that might be one way of making sure that his/her concerns are addressed, but isn’t it reasonable to hope that one’s elected ANC rep would represent those concerns, and to feel frustrated if there’s a disconnect between “what my neighbors and I are concerned about” and “what my ANC is focusing on”?
      Not everyone has the time/inclination/etc. to be a community leader (especially when it comes to a time-consuming, unpaid, often-thankless position like being an ANC rep). Community leaders are (at least in theory) supposed to represent their constituents.

    • I think the OP is being a little misleading about the meeting. As I posted above, it was a special meeting called for the purpose of discussing the parks and recreation issues in the neighborhood. This was not a regular ANC meeting. That being said, its not like any of the ANC Commisioners would have been much help. There needs to be a sweeping change in how Ward 4 is run.

  • Let me guess… MPD promised “increased patrol” and asked you to “keep a lookout for suspicious activity.” I hate to say this, but your can’t rely on the cops to do anything. Glad to see you raising awareness on your own.

  • Elect Bowser, she will take care of you.

  • Someone was mugged in front of my neighbor’s house as I was coming home Sunday evening at 11pm. This was at 5th and ingraham NW. MPD came very quickly, but suspects and victim left the scene. But I have noticed an increased police presence on bikes and in cars in the neighborhood. Please make sure the next meeting is announced on the listserve.

  • Maybe just maybe MPD could do something about the known juvenile fencing and drug operation on Crittenden?!

  • I went to the ANC 1A meeting last night to talk about the crime issues I’ve had since moving to Columbia Heights in March. Crime in ANC was up 30% in June and July driven by thefts and ADWs, but went back down in Sept. MPD was there to give a (mostly non-)update about the recent murder on 14th St and gave a rundown of crime stats in their PSA (I believe 402) and then skedaddled. There doesn’t seem to be much continuous engagement about the issue. If you want action, start contacting your the Mayor’s office, Councilmembers, ANC Commissioners and PSA Lt’s and get organized to find a mechanism to hold them accountable and raise awareness. It’s only so effective if people are only involved when you’re a crime victim..

  • On September 18, our house burglarized in this same manner, with the perps entering through our second floor bedroom window. They grabbed a few Apple products and exited through our back door, which triggered the alarm. We’re located just north of you in Manor Park. I assumed that it was related to the rash of burglaries mentioned in the Washington Post article earlier this week, but it sounds like it might be the same guys who hit your house. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/crime/ankle-monitor-plots-path-of-brazen-burglary-spree/2014/10/06/510c33dc-4ada-11e4-b72e-d60a9229cc10_story.html?hpid=z4

  • I’ve lived on this street for over 3 years. I too had my back door glass punched out recently. However, rather than call the police I replaced the glass, added a stronger lock and put motion sensors in the back. Being more vigilant and knowing all the neighbors is the best way to prevent things like this. Calling the police and wanting more police presence is NOT the answer. If you have been in this neighborhood you know police already harass long time residents constantly. Every week I see people being stopped and frisked by jump out cars, I record police pulling people over randomly – pulling them out throwing them down, accusing them of having drugs, and eventually having to let them go while visibly frustrated Being a good neighbor is not bringing more of that into our wonderful community it is, as I said above, just being more vigilant – without more police.

    • If you don’t report crimes to the police, however, they can take advantage of the underreporting to claim that crime isn’t happening, or that it’s happening at lower levels than it really is.

  • I don’t know if there’s any connection, but back in the springtime, a bunch of cars were vandalized in that general area.

  • On Tuesday, October 7, 2014, ANC 4D held a Public Hearing on recreation space for children and youth pursuant to DCMR 1-309.10(h)(2). The public hearing was noticed in the DC Register, and its purpose was to facilitate District of Columbia government action to secure public recreation space for children and youth in ANC 4D’s jurisdiction. A report will be issued.

    I am particularly puzzled and dismayed by the misinformation put forth in this article about the October 7 ANC 4D public hearing at Gethsemane Church, and concerned that no one sought to check facts before allowing the lie to fester. When DC Council holds public hearings on transportation issues, it addresses transportation issues only. When Council holds public hearings on education, it addresses education only, and not housing. So this public hearing on providing recreation space for children and youth and appropriately addressed that issue.

    No one asked the Commissioners to address crime, and anyone who wanted to speak was allowed to do so. Additionally, the agenda announced ANC 4D’s regularly 3d Tuesday-of-the month monthly meeting which will take place Tuesday, October 21 at Truesdell Education Campus, 800 Ingraham St., NW.

    Next time, try for accuracy and not sensationalism!

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