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MPD Can’t Win Even When They Win

by Prince Of Petworth November 28, 2008 at 1:18 pm 23 Comments

DSCN4260, originally uploaded by Prince of Petworth.

I think I have always been open with my disappointment in the Metropolitan Police Department. I have always been upset with their lack of (visible) foot patrols after touting a renewed community policing model. I unfortunately live in a neighborhood that has faced a resurgence in gang violence. This is not an easy problem. Gang violence is notoriously difficult to break for a variety of reasons. But don’t get me wrong, I think the police need to do more to crack the problem. Putting flood lights up after a shooting is not going to solve the problem. Many have suggested solutions including stiffer gun sentences among others. I strongly advocate targeted foot patrols. But that is not why I am writing this post.

I was dismayed to see DCist jump on the bandwagon seemingly criticizing MPD for their quick work arresting the accused Spevak murderers in Chevy Chase. They cynically write:

“Can’t help but feel like the speed of these arrests lies in direct proportion to how rich and white the victims are.”

Good grief. Believe me I want all murderers to be arrested regardless of who their victims are. But, hmm, perhaps there was evidence here that allowed them to make a quick arrest? Maybe a drive by shooting where little evidence exists is a bit harder to crack? It just seems beyond jaded to me to criticize the MPD for doing a good job.

Now, I don’t have the resources to be a crack reporter at the moment. I read the news and have many conversations with many folks around town. (Yup, I even take photographs of doors among other things.) But I’m not able to do the research necessary to make such a claim. I’m just going on gut instinct here. If these accusations are going to be made I’d like a similar comparison to judge MPD. Can someone remember a situation in which a poor black elderly couple were murdered (not a tragic shooting where the victim was killed by a stray bullet) and the crime was left unsolved?

Like I said, don’t get me wrong, MPD does need to do a better job in addressing many forms of violence, particularly gang violence. Believe me, I live blocks away from numerous shootings and I’m devastated by them. But I’m also going to say kudos to MPD for catching the perpetrators of this vicious crime in Chevy Chase.

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