Another Shooting at 14th and V St, NW at 8:25pm Tuesday – Update: Homicide, Suspect Arrested


Update from MPD:

“Detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide Branch have announced an arrest has been made in the homicide which occurred in the 1400 block of V Street, Northwest on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at approximately 8:25 pm.

Members of the Third District responded to the sound of gunshots and upon arrival, located an adult male suffering from gunshot wounds. The victim was transported to an area hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

The decedent has been identified as 29-year-old Delany Christopher Epps of Northeast, DC.

Shortly after the shooting on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at approximately 8:28 pm, a suspect was developed and 29-year-old Raphael Antonio Roy of Northwest, DC was arrested. He was charged with First Degree Murder While Armed in the shooting death of Mr. Epps.

The Metropolitan Police Department currently offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone that provides information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for any homicide committed in the District of Columbia. Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the police at (202) 727-9099. Additionally, anonymous information may be submitted to the department’s TEXT TIP LINE by text messaging 50411.”

Update from MPD:

“Detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide Branch are investigating a homicide which occurred at the intersection of 14th Street and V Street, Northwest on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at approximately 8:25 pm.

An adult male victim was found shot at the location and transported to an area hospital where he later died.

A suspect has been arrested.

The investigation is ongoing. Additional information will be released as it becomes available.”

A reader reports

Another shooting at 14&V, 6-8 shots at 8:25, I went out on our balcony and could hear people from on street saying the shooter ran east on V. There is a large group of people in front of the reeves center, blocked by the tree by provision. Victim(s) probably there.

Ambulance just drove down W St towards Howard with a cop car escort which leads me to believe the person inside was alive.

Search helicopter overhead must be looking for the suspect.”

On twitter readers write:

“huge police presence at 14/V NW. Folks on scene saying homicide with 5-6 shots fired”

“Alleged shooting at 14th / V St NW around 830. Shooter allegedly ran off by foot”

“four shots heard at 14 and V, Nw. Cops everywhere. Looked like shooter ran down V heading for 13, cops in pursuit.”

Thanks to all who emailed and tweeted @PoPville. Updates when more is known.

Update from MPD 9pm:

“MPD is working a shooting in the 1400 V Street, NW .One in Custody”

121 Comment

  • The alert system says someone is in custody (3D is working a shooting in the 1400 V St, NW .One in Custody ).

  • I live close to 14th & V and I heard what I thought was firecracker (a quick burst) and then silence for a moment. Then I heard screams and 10 seconds laters the sirens started.

    • I live near there as well, but on the back side of a building — I did hear the sirens and helicopters and wondered what was going on. This is around the time I walk home from class at night. This sucks.

  • Holy crap. I must have just barely missed this. Left Busboys and Poets at probably 8:15-8-20. I didn’t notice the gunshots but definitely heard the sirens right as I was getting home at 8:30.

  • I live 1 block over and I heard the gunshots. Was hoping it was fireworks but then the sirens started. I can still hear the helicopter.

    I haven’t felt safe on that block of V Street for a while now.

    About an hour before the shooting I heard a man screaming and shouting at someone. Did anyone else catch that? Any chance it was related or am I being paranoid?

  • Was riding home up 14th Street from Florida as a number of police went by in a hurry, even saw one running on foot, presumably to her car, near Belmont. Heard the copter by the time we made it to Euclid and sounds like at least one still circling now.

  • We were sitting outside on Provision 14’s patio about 50 feet away when this happened. Everyone dove under the tables and then we crouched and ran inside about 30 seconds later. So scary. 🙁 Pretty sure the victim was killed. Props to the cops bc they were on site within 45 seconds.

  • To echo how quickly cops were on the scene: Walked over from the U St Metro toward the northbound bus stop on 14th. Noticed two cops sitting in the Subway at the corner of 14th and U. Got to the bus stop. Heard 5-6 pops up at V. Before I could get to cover in the liquor store 30 ft away, I saw the same two cops on foot sprinting towards 14th and V.

  • Oh my….a friend and I were at the gas station there with our kids (three 5 year olds and a 3 year old) at 8 pm waiting for our spouses to pick us up after we had to get off the metro due to the power outage affecting the green and yellow lines. The cops were likely there quickly since there were many cars at 11th and U. Hugged my kids a little tighter tonight.

  • I heard five shots too from a block away. Safe to say I’ve walked down V between 14 and 15 for the last time. It’s been a bad pocket in a good area for years.

    • I’m actually glad to hear this, as I tend to avoid any of those side streets just in case. I generally feel safer walking on 14th and U St to get around, but given this was on the corner I’m not so sure.

  • Sad to say, it’s time to give up on DC for my family. This crap isn’t going to change anytime soon.

  • For those who are moving due to this incident, can you please let Dan know where you are moving from and how much you’re paying for rent? I’d like to get the jump on the CL posting .

    • +1,000,000

      Seriously folks, it’s the city and violent crime is going to happen sometimes. Give your elected officials a very hard time about it and try not to let your fears overwhelm the 99% of the time that this issue doesn’t affect you.

      • “sometimes”?

        Homicides in DC are up something like 40% this year. FORTY PERCENT.

        • To be fair: homicides are up 40% for last year which was an all time low. They’ve dropped precipitously for 20 years. Not saying anyone should stay or go… but let’s be honest, the trend of homicides is way down.

          • Let’s be real. Homicides are up 40% but that ignores that most of victims are young, black and low income. Their lives matter, and it’s a shame this is happening.
            That, however, does not mean EVERYONE has a 40% higher chance of being shot. The average POP reader – young, higher income, educated – is probably just as safe as last year.

      • Soothing words. I mean why should folks worry about ending up like the young man gunned down while stepping out of a cab?

      • What bewilders me is that in the US we all just expect violent crime in our cities. We just accept this as the default position. Why do people who decide to opt out of being in an area where violence is a regular occurrence suddenly get accused of being “soft” and destined for the burbs?

      • Bull. There are plenty of large cities worldwide with very low violent crime rates, especially in central areas like this one. We need to start asking why American cities are different, and why our leaders aren’t taking the necessary steps to prevent violent crime.

    • The calculus is very different when you have a spouse and dependents. Maybe you’ll understand when you grow up.

      • Could you share that math? What is more likely, being killed by a stray bullet in NW DC or a traffic accident in suburbia? Personally, and with a family, I rather take my chances in the urban jungle than the desert of suburbia. I rather have a street smart 7 yr old than a sheltered and clueless one.

        • A traffic accident is more likely, a bullet more lethal.

        • phl2dc

          Not everyone who lives in the “desert of suburbia” is sheltered and clueless. Not everything outside of the city is grass and cows. Maybe some people would rather have a sheltered and clueless 7 yr old than a dead one.

        • I’ve got a vibrant small plate that wards off tigers and drivebys. PM me 4 teh deets LOL.

        • Comparing suburban traffic deaths to urban homicides seems to be the new diversionary meme de jour. This is really a stupid argument for a variety of reasons (assumes that no one in dc is killed in car crashes, violent street crime is the main issue not homicide, etc). There are lots of walkable urban cities: NYC, Bos, SF, and Seattle that have much lower crime rates than DC. Even Philly and Chicago have lower crime rates than us.

          Yes, DC is better than the 80s and were no longer competing with Baltimore and Detroit for the most dangerous major city in America title. But, our crime rate is higher than pretty much any other city that isn’t a declining basket case.

          For the record, our poverty rate is actually lower than NYC and Boston. So yes poverty is a factor, but it can’t explain everything.

          • Chicago? Assuming reasonably similar margins of error in counting in both cities the rates are as follows (2014, per 100,000 residents):

            homicide: 21.2
            robbery: 547.6
            aggravated assault: 453.1
            burglary: 116.6
            Larceny-theft: 2,684.9
            Motor vehicle theft: 627.7

            homicide: 16
            robbery: 521
            aggravated assault: 372
            burglary: 493
            larceny-theft: 2,269
            motor vehicle theft: 486

            So DC has lower rates of violent crime, a higher rate of burglary and lower rates of motor vehicle theft and larceny-theft.

            I would say by those figures Chicago has a higher crime rate than DC.

          • My bad, Chicago has a slight higher crime rate. The fact remains that DC has a much lower crime rate than its yuppie peers.

        • I don’t think living in a city and living in a safe area are mutually exclusive. Just because a person doesn’t feel comfortable living in a neighborhood where there are murders on their block and innocent bystanders being the victims of violent crimes doesn’t mean they want to give up all of the rich benefits of an urban lifestyle for a mcmansion and the PTA. It’s not fair to condescend those who worry about their safety in an unsafe environment.

        • HaileUnlikely

          As others have pointed out, there are lots of places besides “suburbia” where people shoot each other a whole lot less than here. There are almost infinitely many other options besides DC and suburbia.

      • Come on, you were always going to end up in the burbs, your city adventure will just be a story you tell at BBQs; just like your study abroad.

          • Except that there are people who stay in the city even with kids. I know lots of them.

          • We live in the city with kids, and actually, I moved from the ‘burbs to the city with thre kids in tow, aged 2, 4, and 7 at the time. Personally, I prefer it. My kids have thrived here. The ‘burbs have their own issues. I hate how people think that moving to the ‘burbs and getting a white picket fence will some how insulate them from any issues whatsoever.

      • Perhaps rethink your words. Having a spouse and children is not the definition of adult, and it is somewhat offensive to suggest that those who are not married and or do not have children are somehow something other than “grown up.”

        • Or the “grow up” refers to the ability to put yourself in somebody else’s shoes and understand that priorities for different people are different.

          • If it’s indeed about putting yourself in someone else’s shoes I’m sure the commenter will apologize for insinuating that those of use who cannot have children are either not adults or not concerned about public safety

          • Not sure whether the breakdown was in logic or in reading comp. There was no insinuation that people who aren’t married or can’t have kids aren’t adults, or that they don’t care about safety. safety. The only insinuation was that those who are so dismissive about safety aren’t adults. (In logic this is called a contrapositive – look it up). You don’t get to be quite so cavalier about safety when you have other people who depend on you. Some adults don’t have kids. Even some kids care about safety. But people who are content to chalk this sh!t up to “living in a city” and are ok with that on the grounds that living in the city is awesome or whatever are not adults.

      • I have a spouse and know kids and no.,,, the calculus isn’t that different.

      • I live in the neighborhood with my spouse and child, and we have no intention of moving away. Please don’t pretend that your perspective is some kind of universal truth and then condescend to people with other points of view.

        • Work on reading comp. I was fairly clearly being deliberately inflammatory when I said “grow up.” I wasn’t telling people who live here with their families to grow up, I was telling people who deride others’ legitimate concerns about safety and decision to leave to grow up. It is fine that you live here and have kids – I have no beef with that. But if you dismissing others’ legitimate concerns with that trite old bullshit about how “it happens” because “it’s a city” (you didn’t, that was somebody else), then I’d say you still need to grow the hell up.

    • Late to the game posting a response here…but after being 10 feet away from the guy who was murdered in this incident, I couldn’t bear to research details until now. I was one of the people who screamed and ran to Provision 14 for cover Tuesday. Almost exactly one month after running for cover into my very nearby apartment building following a drive-by shooting involving the same people in the same exact spot on this block. I’m moving as soon as possible. Yes, shootings happen all over the city, but this is the third shooting on this block since I moved in (in July), and it is no longer “random.” You’re welcome to take over my lease if you’re ready to risk your life.

  • Wow!!! I live a few blocks away and heard this! Originally thought it was it was gunshots on TV (NCIS); however, now know it was real…. Frightening!

    Hope the police find idiots and put them behind bars for a long time!

    I’m thankful for popville – since I cannot get this type of news anywhere else!…

  • A total embarrassment. DC still “keeping it real” – real stupid.

  • I Dont Get It

    There was still police presence there at 7:00 am.

  • We live in the building behind bus boys and poets and the shooter tossed his gun over the fence into our yard. We’re with those moving away.

    • justinbc

      I’m surprised the police, who you surely reported this to, didn’t instruct you not to disclose any details about an ongoing investigation.

      • Does “shooter tossed gun over fence into yard” actually constitute the sort of detail that the police usually restrict? (It wouldn’t have struck me that way.)

        • Considering the entire neighborhood watched as the police combed that area with flashlights for hours, I don’t really think this counts as a secret. Overheard in my house last night “well, that’s clearly where he threw the gun…”

        • I think Justin just wants to feel good about himself for a minute or two.

        • justinbc

          Textdoc, yes, if it’s your yard and you potentially recovered it. They ask people who have first-hand interaction with crime scenes not to disclose details often as a preventative measure to protect the individual.

          • My vague recollection is that the building behind Busboys and Poets is a large apartment (or condo) building, so I figured that the person’s “our yard” meant the building’s yard, rather than an individual resident’s yard.

    • It seemend that fenty was doing a good job with the city. He knew that half the council was corrupt so he avoided them. We saw real gain throughout when he way mayor.

      Good thing the electorate know how to pick them.

    • This is not meant to be a judgment on the merits of moving vs. staying–since I think each individual should do what they feel is right for them in terms of their own personal safety and comfort level–but funny enough, the same thing happened to my mom in the ‘burbs. The police came in and searched her yard after a fleeing suspect tossed a weapon in there. So you kinda never know…

  • On Saturday night at around 9pm, my friend and I were in an uber traveling north on 5th St NW towards M St. There was heavy police presence on 5th/M and a man appeared to be on the ground on the SW corner of M and 5th St not moving. Cops were around but not EMT, tape was up, yet I haven’t heard of this reported. Anyone know what happened?

  • I SAW a shooting at 20th and C st NE. Last Week.
    Was working on the computer by front window. Heard shots, looked out window and saw the flashes from the shots coming out of a blue honda civic window. Car finished off 7 shots, then peeled out and left.
    I went down to the street, along with a neighbor. Cops show up, we show them the pile of shells on street, point out where the shots were going to, etc. Gave them the license plate # of the car i copied down. They barely paid attention to what we were saying. Didn’t take down our names, Nothin.

    And this “shooting” wasn’t even listed in the police twitter feed, website, anywhere. Apparently its not a “shooting” unless somebody is wounded/killed, like 14th and V.

    It is WAAAAY worse than the Stats show, since the stats don’t have this “shooting”. And the shooting my buddy witnessed in Lincoln park… where the guy missed his victim and just shot out some windows of cars…
    That was classified as a “destruction of property”… like it was a kid who broke a car window to steal of car stereo or some shit.

    You have NO IDEA how bad it is, because the Police and Mayor LIE to you constantly.

    • There is no excuse for officers failing to properly investigate a crime (such as recording information from or the identity of witnesses). However, I understand that it can be confusing why crimes are classified as they are, so I would like to explain some of the rationales behind it. Under DC Code, the maximum possible penalty for the base charge of unlawful discharge of a firearm (meaning no people or property were hit) is one year in prison. (DC Code § 22-4503.01 and 22-4515) The maximum penalty for destruction of property (if the property is valued at greater than $1000) is 10 years imprisonment. (DC Code § 22-303) Clearly, if a person is hit, or if the shots were fired at someone willing to make a police report, a different offense would be charged. In this case, if there was no complainant, destruction of property might be the highest charge. It is possible that if an arrest were made, and if the prosecutors chose to prosecute, they might be able to charge the unlawful discharge of a firearm as a lesser charge.
      Lastly, the incident would also be captured as “sounds of gunshots” in calls for service data (which includes incidents self-initiated by cops, not just calls for service). That is why no one single measure fully captures the indicators of public safety. Not just arrests, not just police reports, and not just calls for service. Police report out a lot of different data, but most often it gets boiled down to just a quick data point (e.g., % reduction or increase in major crime categories).

      I hope this is helpful.

      • I do wonder why Assault with a Dangerous Weapon isn’t listed as the offense, particularly since it is a general intent crime and it does not require an injury to be charged. I believe it goes back to the part about not having a complainant/victim, but one could argue that all of the people who were nearby were the complainants because the bullets were whizzing by their heads. The concern is that if a drive-by shooting with no injuries is classified as a misdemeanor “Destruction of property” or “unlawful discharge of a firearm” in MPD systems, will that trigger a sufficient investigation? Or will it be the same resources as if someone smashes a car window (also destruction of property), or shoots a gun up into the air a few times on the 4th of July (unlawful discharge of a firearm)?

        • Those are good questions, but ADW actually does require a person. It goes back to the crime of assault, which requires that it be an action directed at “another” (person). The victim can’t simply be the community.

          § 22-404. Assault or threatened assault in a menacing manner; stalking.

          (a) (1) Whoever unlawfully assaults, or threatens ANOTHER in a menacing manner, shall be fined not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01 or be imprisoned not more than 180 days, or both.

          (2) Whoever unlawfully assaults, or threatens ANOTHER in a menacing manner, and intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes significant bodily injury to another shall be fined not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01 or be imprisoned not more than 3 years, or both. For the purposes of this paragraph, the term “significant bodily injury” means an injury that requires hospitalization or immediate medical attention.

  • I heard the gunshots outside my window. I was hoping it was fireworks, but then saw a bunch of cop cars. This has been the second time I’ve heard gunshots in the last few months… wondering if I should move? It can be a bit unsettling.

    • Tbh, I moved to U Street feeling like it was one of the safer options that isn’t Dupont (expensive), Foggy Bottom (ridiculously expensive) or Georgetown/upper NW. But I could be wrong.

      • Same here. Overall I feel safe, but it’s this particular street that I’ve heard gunshots coming from before. A few months ago at night I heard a loud gunshot and saw a bunch of cop cars swarm in and search the area with flashlights.

        With that said, there is a large apartment complex they are building on the street (corner of 15th and V). Once construction is finished and people start moving in, I’m wondering if it will have any impact on the block. Hopefully more foot traffic and more light will bring less crime?

        • Perhaps! There’s also a new complex going up on the next block, across from the Valero. Then again, we already live in the most densely packed zip code of DC so I don’t know that foot traffic is going to do much.

        • This is a guess, but I think the building beside the new construction is the problem child (the garden style apartments, not the high rise which is senior housing). When I walked by the complex last week it looked like the entire first floor was boarded up, so I don’t know if they are moving people out and have plans to demolish it for new construction as well.

      • U St isn’t really much cheaper than dupont. if you’re talking about a 1 Br apt, you’re talking about ~5% difference (less than $100).

  • I have been saying this for a while, but the neighborhood where this happened (and all along U Street for that matter) needs to be better lit. I am not saying better lighting will stop these types of things because you can only do so much to deter crazy people, but it can’t hurt. Why not wrap the white Christmas tree type lights (don’t have a better name for them) around the trees all up and down U? 14th, Logan, Shaw, and U have obviously become extremely popular areas for nightlife so why not embrace that and add these types of lights? Dimly lit streets encourages crime and it has always been that way.

    For those of you saying you are done with DC because of violent crimes; I hear you but I think it’s something that should be taken into account when you move into these areas that are going through gentrification. I was born and raised in DC and live in Dupont/Kalorama now and have watched these transformations the past few years and it has been dramatic. I think people forget that not even 4 years ago, Shaw was considered the hood and you rarely ever saw anything good going on there after dark. 10 years ago, 14th street was still littered with hookers up and down the block and 14th and V was literally a wasteland. The development of these areas have happened at an insanely fast pace. However, just because development has prospered doesn’t mean the neighborhood has completely adjusted yet. It’s going to take time, unfortunately. It’s really sad that this is the case right now, but these types of things happen in literally every major city throughout the country. All the people who move into these neighborhoods expecting everything to be changed immediately are seeing this now. It’s a risk you take. It’s sad and I hate it, but that’s just the way it is.

    On the bright side, at least the cops were on top of this immediately. Like I said, you can never predict what crazy people like this will do. All you can ask is that reaction time is swift, and justice is served. The city has wayyyyy too much invested in these developments to let people get scared away. I expect that we will see changes implemented very quickly.

    • I do agree about lighting. I had to come in to work early yesterday when it was still dark, and there are definitely pockets of light and then pockets of really dark areas.

  • I have worked on the 1400 block of V st NW since 20002. I know most of the young people on the block and we greet each other daily. They have no mentors, outlets or opportunities. None of the new development had benefited them or their families. Most new residents don’t speak to them or acknowledge their existence. The solution to the crime problem is to create opportunities for everyone, so there aren’t people in our community who feel they have nothing to live for. How many people who have moved into new condos in this area have taken any time to learn about the people who were born and raised there? Or To give back to the community?

    • “They have no mentors, outlets or opportunities.”
      “The solution to the crime problem is to create opportunities for everyone, so there aren’t people in our community who feel they have nothing to live for.”

      What kind of opportunities do you want to offer them? If they want a steady job there are about 100 restaurants hiring within a few blocks of where they live.

      I bet a lot of people who live on the block are intimately aware of the people who were born and raised there and that’s why they avoid them…

      • I wonder how many first-generation immigrants are employed at businesses within two blocks of this incident? I’d guess hundreds but it could be thousands, not to mention the many that drive by in their cabs and delivery trucks, or the many that work the construction jobs temporarily. The idea that if only there were job openings available these problems would go away is appealing to people who feel extremely guilty about their own success, but isn’t really true. Much like the idea that ‘guns’ cause this. The real problem is far more complicated, and the solution much more elusive.

    • These are good points, thanks for sharing. I do say hello, but it’s true, I don’t stop to take the time to learn about people who were born and raised in the neighborhood. I should do that more often.

    • “Most new residents don’t speak to them or acknowledge their existence.”

      I’ve been heckled by people on this block as I walk by, as I’m sure lots of others have. I’m a shy person by nature, so it got to the point that I avoided the block so I wouldn’t be yelled at while walking by. If they want to engage with new members, being friendly would be a good first step.

  • I bet if you tore down those two low income apartment buildings on V street between 14 and 15th. This shit wouldn’t happen anymore

    • And send them where? Onto the streets for things to get worse? It irks me how people on here seem to think that just tearing down low-income housing will make problems disappear. It’s almost like y’all expect the people to just disappear into thin air once their home doesn’t exist anymore.

      • Well, to be fair, the crime does center around the low income housing. And the bad actors may walk a block or two, but they’re not going to stray far. I get what you’re saying – from a broader policy standpoint, we have to address the underlying issues. But as someone who lives on this block, no denying that I’d be much safer if that housing was moved elsewhere. Selfish? Totally. But I would not shed a tear if that housing was shuttered.

        • That’s true. I don’t know who lives in this particular building, but it WOULD be nice if we could somehow weed out the violent criminals without harming people who are forced to live among them (for example, single mothers and their children), since I’m pretty sure that just breeds resentment and the need to find a living in not-so-kosher ways.

        • His name is Delaney Epps and he was a father. This conversation is not only ignorant to the institutionalized issues at work here, but instead of using this as a forum to recognize the tradgedy that occurred, it’s a soapbox for the wealthy to.voice their fears about how the neighborhood they’ve lived in for 15 seconds makes them nervous. Let’s instead talk about the loss that a community has faced and how we can rally around our neighbors and help them through a time we will never be able to understand.

          • Thank you for adding this to the discussion.

          • Thank you!

          • Actually, I’ve lived on this block for longer than a lot of these teenagers have been alive. And I’m very far from wealthy. And I’m a minority. I’ve watched this place change. Been here since I used to buy homeless Blackcat Bill cheeseburgers and walk home looking over my shoulder bc no street past 16 was safe after dark. But thank you for your assumptions and your ignorance.

          • The more I think about it, the more this comment irritates me. I know, Eva, that it seemed like you were learning big ideas at Sarah Lawerence or wherever you graduated from 3 years ago that made you think you’re a woman of the people and you learned about “institutionalized issues” and “forums..” How dare you call me “ignorant.” Come talk to me when you’ve lived here for decades. This is my neighborhood. This is my community. How dare you.

          • So this great guy is being a “father’ by choosing to live away from his kids, in Northeast, so the mom can get free government housing. Comes over to visit them and brings his drug deals and violence with him. See here: Maybe he should have stuck around and actually fathered his kids. Sounds like he wasn’t a father, he was just someone who got someone pregnant.

          • So, according to news sources, this guy came into my neighborhood, my community, to sell drugs. I don’t think that should be a capital offense. But like it or not, selling drugs in the streets means guns and shooting and violence and an unsafe place for me, my wife, my kids, my community. And I really wish this guy would have taken that crap elsewhere.

    • Agree; what can we do to get rid of the housing?

    • You mean the ones that have been since long before you lived there?

    • G- Portner Place is closed and shuttered and a new “luxury” building is under construction at the corner of V and 15th.

    • The low-income housing was already emptied earlier this summer and will be torn down soon. The other building is mixed income housing. As a resident of that building, I know that the most of the people I see out on the street do not live there. I have been living in this building for three years and always thought that the guys on the street were harmless. This summer is the first time since I have been here that it has felt unsafe. I am not sure what the answer is, but apparently emptying out that one building certainly didn’t help.

  • Anyone remember the 1st District (Georgetown) police commander/captain/lieutenant who was forced to resign after telling people to report anyone who doesn’t look like they belong in the neighborhood after a spike in crime the other year? That comment is sadly looking like it’s a sensible one for 14th Street.

    • Wow, so who belongs in the neighborhood these days? If anything, in that case, we should be calling the cops on all the white, upperclass people that live in the new condos.

    • How so? What if the perpetrators of this violent act actually do belong on 14th St, because, ya know, they live there?

    • What in the world is sensible about that comment? How would you identify someone “who doesn’t look like they belong” in a neighborhood that attracts people from everywhere?

    • I’d love to hear what your description would be of someone “who doesn’t look like they belong in the neighborhood”

  • I had just biked down that street an hour before and was walking down 14th toward V as I heard screams, people walking off in the opposite direction and a huge number of police descending on the area. If I hadn’t lingered at the gym I would have been walking by right as it happened. Very scary. Surprised there weren’t already cops on 14th and V. I see a cop car stationed there most days.

    • Not at all a cop car stationed there. A cop lives in the apartment complex next to the former public housing complex. That is the ONLY reason you usually see a cop car there. If the cops actually cared and put up decent surveillance, this shooting likely would have never happened. This was the third shooting on this block in 3 months. Guess it doesn’t make the news unless someone dies.

  • I was sitting on my couch watching TV when I heard a burst of 5+ shots. We live in Union Row which has the same view as the image in the blog. Sadly, a similar situation happened a few years ago so it was a bit like deja vu. The difference was this time it was at night and the last time it was during the day. And that time the person shot survived.

    Quickly following the shots, I saw a group of young men scatter. running down V street toward 13th. It happened so quickly all I remember is they looked pretty young, like teenagers.

    It only took about a minute or two for the cops to coming running from near 14th and U. Then, a flood of cop cars, an ambulance and a firetruck showed up. I do applaud the Metro Police Dept. for how quickly they arrived at the scene. After that it was a mess though. At one point, I counted 30+ police officers all over the place trying to secure traffic and 7+ cop cars parked on the street.


  • In all truth, it really depends where you are living in the district. In my PSA crime actually dropped, a homicide may happen once a year, but usually not at all.

    Downtown areas with a great deal of nightlife bring more risk, no matter where that is. It’s not the best place for children. There are good places to raise children and families in the city, U st NW is not one of them. Leave that area to young people without kids.

    Likewise this area was much worse when I first moved here years ago. It has changed substantially for the better, and this year does not feel fundamentally different, but rather like a spike rather than a permanent upward trend. The demographics are just fundamentally different. You really have no idea how bad it was pre-2007 if you think it’s bad now.

    As it was stated, this is a spike among lows and the problems are not city wide. some corners in the city are as safe as they ever were, and some are actually safer. But some did see a spike.

    Personally I am not seeing this as a long term backtracking, one bad year does not make a trend. These charts over time do tend to have spikes even while they are trending downward over a long period in time. That’s why this year may be worse, it doesn’t mean things will objectively degrade long term. This was the first spike in five years, but if you look historically, things do go up and down within a range. In general this year may be the “peak year”, which is often followed by a decline the following year.

    Again from a fear based perspective this is not helpful when deciding whether or not to move, but I am in no way going to rush out of the city. Especially since I am in the group least likely to be a homicide victim in DC.

  • Thank you for covering this. I’m not sure if it’s due to the Pope being in town, but this has yet to be on any local news website. This is definitely the result of too many young idiot having easy access to guns…I knew the victim and this is truly a senseless tragedy. He was a local guy who grew up on U, the father of two young children, and a non-violent and friendly young man. One of the best senses of humor I’ve ever encountered. He will be missed.

  • Truly senseless! He was a good guy

    • The decedent? He may have been a good guy in your opinion, but he was also only three days away from being released from the probation he was assigned on 9/25/2014 after being convicted of a felony for carrying an unlicensed pistol. Sadly this guy would have been better off if he’d been incarcerated instead of getting a slap on the wrist for his felony.

      i’ve taken to reflexively looking up the names of accused violent felons and their victims on, and 95% of the time both parties have a history of felony arrests. Which supports the point that the people getting killed in these incidents are not the typical reader of PoPville.

      • I actually was not aware of the details of his probation, as I do not spend my time looking up peoples criminal history and then judging them for it once they’ve been killed. However, I do know that he was employed, providing for his children and maybe it seems had decided to go a different route with his life?!? I only know what I witnessed around the neighborhood, and I appreciated what I saw. Who are you to judge anyone?! I guess what you are saying is only white privileged millennials should be mourned when they die?

        • i’m saying it’s not exactly a “senseless tragedy” when someone who was busted a year ago for carrying an illegal firearm gets shot. it’s someone who has decided to play a deadly game coming out on the losing end of that game.

          his child’s situation is very sad, on the other hand, on many levels.

          and by the way it takes about 20 seconds to look up someone’s criminal history in dc online.


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