“What merits a police alert?”


“Dear PoPville,

What’s the criteria for an alert to be sent through AlertDC? I live at 18th and D NE and there were 5-7 shots fired around 7:30PM tonight. Police were on the scene and were clearly aware, though there was no alert. This is a busy time and place where there are often children out playing, people out and walking around, etc. so I was surprised when no alert came through. Why are some crimes alerted and not others?”

In my experience regarding shots fired, MPD and AlertDC will only issue an alert if a person is hit by a bullet. Occasionally they may issue an alert if there is property damage although that seems to be prompted by resident requests. Regarding guns (or knives) another time alerts are issued by MPD or Alert DC is when an armed robbery or carjacking occurs. For example from last night:

3 Comment

  • I’d argue that the crime stats are one of the biggest unspoken scandals in this city. Lots of interests (Mayor’s office, police, real estate, etc) in ensuring that DC looks like an ever safer city. If only we had a newspaper that did actual news reporting rather than hard, breaking news like “millennials invent group housing.” Within the last six months I’ve seen a girl pull a butcher knife on someone who was being beaten in the street (and the police found the butcher knife) and had a neighbor shot in the chest in a B+E (police and ambulance responded). Neither were reported on DC alerts.