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Man Shot in Brightwood, Man Shot and Killed in Petworth

by Prince Of Petworth November 1, 2013 at 9:10 am 56 Comments


From MPD:

“At approximately 10:30PM on October 31, 2013, MPD Fourth District units received a call for gunshots in the area of the 1200 block of Rock Creek Ford Road, Northwest. Units responded to the location and canvassed the area, but did not locate a victim. Shortly thereafter, an adult male victim arrived at a local area hospital suffering from an apparent gunshot wound and was treated for his injury.

5th and Shepherd St, NW

Several hours later [2:09am], MPD’s Shotspotter gunshot detection system alerted Fourth District units to multiple gunshots in the 400 block of Shepherd Street, Northwest. Units responded to the location and discovered an unconscious adult male victim suffering from apparent gunshot wounds. The victim was transported from the scene to a local area hospital.

There was no lookout provided for the suspects in either case.

Fourth District detectives are actively investigating both incidents. At this time, it is unknown whether these two incidents are related. Anyone with information regarding these cases is asked to call (202) 727-9099 or text 50411.

The victim from the Shepherd Street case was pronounced. This case is being investigated by Detectives of the Homicide Branch. We continue to ask that 202-727-9099 is called if you have any information.”

Comments (56)

  1. So now in the past two weeks we’ve had 5 or 6 rounds shot off at the corner of 3rd and Taylor and a murder at 5th and Shepherd. Sure would be nice to get a heads-up from Bowser/MPD on what the hell is going on.

    Particularly ironic considering the new $900K listing right down the street at 5th and Quincy. Tough to imagine paying a million bucks for a house when gunshots are erupting through the neighborhood.

  2. Gunshots at the corner of 3rd & Taylor….when did that happen? Can you post more info? (I live right on that block)

  3. I think it was like two weeks ago. Nobody was hit so there was no police report. The scary part was I think it was on the early side something like 8 or 9pm. Anyone else hear anything about that?

  4. Yes, it was around 9:30 two weeks ago yesterday, if memory serves. Very quick MPD response, picked up shell casings, nobody hit, no news subsequent. More info here: http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Petworth/conversations/messages/21904

    Seems more concerning in light of this.

  5. It was around 9, a little after, I think. I was at my buddy’s house getting ready to head home along Taylor with my baby and wife. Crack crack crack crack. Police arrived later and taped off the intersection.

    Seems like the violent crime (victims or not) of late in the neighborhood warrants a response from Bowser and the DC police.

  6. Wait a minute… What the heck is “MPD’s Shotspotter gunshot detection system”!?! Totally went under the radar…

  7. It’s a series of microphones deployed throughout the city that are hooked up to a centralized computer system. When the microphones pick up something that sounds like a gun shot, the computers can triangulate the location by using a bit of math and physics (speed of sound). The system then automatically notifies cops in the area. It’s quicker than relying on witnesses to call into the 911 system (also mitigates the fact that certain residents won’t call in because they don’t want to “snitch”).


  9. It kinda seems like people around the neighborhood would rather pretend that crime really isn’t on the uptick in this and other parts of town, lest their property values be affected. They ought to know that it’s going to have to get a lot worse in order for that to happen. When there are no more million dollar condos with bars on the windows, then we’ll talk.

  10. These incidents are disturbing to say the least, but to characterize the neighborhood as getting worse in crime I think is a bit of a stretch. I feel much safer living in this area now than when we first moved in 4 years ago. There are much fewer problem areas, but there are still some remaining obviously.

    Having said that, hopefully the police will get this area on Shepherd under control before further retaliations occur.

  11. We had several events of unsolved gunshots north of Grant Circle a few months back. No word from MPD at all. My neighbor witnessed the kids, and the detective didn’t even follow up. Very concerning the crews around here get away with this kind of crap for so long.

    And, why was the murder last night not posted on DC police alerts? They seem so selective in what they post.

  12. I think I heard the 2AM shots last night.

    The 400 and 500 blocks of Shepherd are different than the ones surrounding them. Other than the occasional pop-in to Blessed 7 to 9, I avoid them.

    I didn’t know about the 3rd/Taylor shots either. The big house one the corner there used to be a HUGE problem, but a few years ago it was sold/renovated and now it sports a Palmetto flag out front and a lack of drug dealing on the corner.

  13. I should clarify…it’s really more the 500 block of Shepherd that’s sketchy. But they there’s the alley-based activity that stretches from the corner of 5th/Taylor over to Shepherd that is probably an issue too.

  14. 5th & Randolph Homeowner

    There is a look out always hanging out near the corner of 5th and Shepard, well actually on Shepard west of 5th. How have the cops not realized or done anything about this. The house at the corner is being renovated but there is always some guy leaning up against the gate there looking in both directions.

  15. 500 Block of Shepherd Res

    We live on the 500 block of Shepherd. We (the block) have been trying hard for years to make things better. This block is full of fantastic people – old and new residents of the area – but, as someone else commented below, it only takes 1 or 2 bad apples to spoil things for everyone.

    Last Spring Bowser held a meeting with MPD to address long-standing issues with one particular problem house in the 500 block of Shepherd (a couple houses west of 5th on the South side… if you’ve walked the block you probably know the house). There were easily 20-30 Shepherd St residents in attendance. That house was sold in August and is currently undergoing a gut renovation.

    Since that house was sold, there has been VERY little activity on the 500 block of Shepherd. Before, we were seeing nightly drug activity, loud street parties every weekend, etc – I’ve seen very little activity in the past few months.

    Last night’s shooting in the 400 block of Shepherd actually comes as a big surprise. I know there were 1 or 2 problem houses on that block (the yellow house comes to mind), but I thought they had already been dealt with. Can anyone confirm the shooting actually happened on the block?

    I have a strong suspicion that the people involved here are not actually from the 400-500 blocks of Shepherd, but there is something drawing them to these blocks that makes them loiter here. Whatever it is, it needs to stop.

  16. It is a big credit to the residents of the 500 block that things have gotten better. Those of us in the surrounding blocks have certainly noticed a change, and your efforts to work with the police and others to make things better are certainly appreciated in the neighborhood.

    I too was shocked by this. As a 15 year resident of Shepherd St. I have found the last 2 years to be very peaceful and quiet. Things have definitely changed for the better from 3-4 years ago when we would hear gunshots with pretty good frequency.

  17. I thought it was just some kids throwing fire crackers around 2am. I looked out of my bedroom window right after I heard the noises and saw someone running south on 5th.

  18. 5th & Randolph Homeowner

    I agree with Justin. How come the neighborhood has not heard squat from MPD? If Bowser can’t even communicate with residents in her ward then the city is in for a whole crap storm if she becomes mayor.

    Any statement, letter, update from the council-member and the police would be greatly appreciated

  19. Not to get off topic, but Tommy Wells seems to be a lot more active in running for mayor so far. I’ve seen him out and about a lot and have already seen signs for his campaign in my neighborhood (smack dab in ward 1). Bowser? Nada.

  20. ” If Bowser can’t even communicate with residents in her ward then the city is in for a whole crap storm if she becomes mayor.”

    Funny. I used to say the same thing about Fenty, yet everyone else here seemed to LOVE him.

  21. Sorry to continue this tangent, but I think Bowswer views Ward 4 as a lock for her so she’s not expending much effort w/ her costituents. I’m personally 0/4 in receiving responses from her in the years that she’s held her position.

  22. I agree. She has completely ignored my emails. Granted I was just asking about CaBi in Brightwood, but she could at least respond. My wife and I are DINKs, pay a lot in taxes, and use few services. If the one thing I am concerned about is a CaBi station, that SHOULD be worthwhile of a response.

    She has no chance of getting our votes.

  23. Given that many of these constituent responses could even have come from an assistant, that shows poor ability to manage an office. And she wants to manage a major city? Yeah, no.

  24. Ward 4 Resident here too. I also will not be giving my vote to Bowser. One of the most corrupt, least responsive, clueless representatives at any elected level.

  25. This is interesting to me as I’ve had great responses from her constituent service people. Once for a major issue and twice for very minor things.

  26. They respond to me every time – that is, either Judy or Brendan (is that his name? The special assistant for special assisitanting? )
    And then, they do nothing. Just like Adrian’s people. They reply to the email, copy their response all over the city, then nothing happens and they never follow up.
    I suppose it is an improvement though. I couldn’t even get Charlene’s people to return my calls. Ever.

  27. Also, I have a friend that works for a citizen advocacy magazine/website/journal (now a ward 4 resident) and was doing research into her ties to wal mart donations. He asked her on twitter about the donations ahead of her support….she blocked him from twitter. Then he was at a town hall to ask questions and found out he was banned from Bowser events…She is bad news and a shady person.

  28. I agree, I live on Illinois/Shepherd, and will often walk around to Taylor to avoid that block. A LOT of really nice people there, always out on the porch ready with a “hello.” But a few bad apples can really ruin the feel of a block. I heard the 1030pm shots (sounded like firework echos), but not the 2am shots near my house. Just woke up to the block being roped off. Really wish there was more from MPD/Council Woman Bowser as well.

    We all want this to be a safe place for everyone, that includes those who are caught up in the violence. They need to find a better way to resolve their issues. Neighbors told me this morning the victim used to live block–this is not random violence, and it saddens me that people I live along side of are living this lifestyle. :(

  29. There’s definitely been an uptick in gunshots in Brightwood too. My husband heard the shots last night when he was out w/our dog. That address is just blocks from the expensive townhouses that are on the market/under contract. Crazy.

  30. I heard it too from the back end of my place. I live on Illinois but the back of my house faces 5th. They were really quick gunshots, maybe 6 or 7 fired off in rapid succession. I looked out my back window but didn’t see anything and couldn’t figure out where they came from. I’ve definitely noticed an increased police presence in the neighborhood lately and was wondering what prompted it. It is crazy Bowser hasn’t spoken out yet. For all of his problems, when I lived in Columbia heights years ago, Jim Graham was always releasing statments and giving updates on violent crime in the area. Why the silence from Bowser?

  31. Sad. And scary. We live pretty much between these two points. Drug dealing is on the decline on our block, but still evident. Sometimes I want to give up and move.

  32. My partner and I recently moved to Petworth (Upshur & 4th) and have noticed in the last few weeks this uptick of shootings within a few blocks from us. We’re so grateful for the diligence of many of our neighbors and especially for forums like Popville! We’d like to be more active in helping this great neighborhood thrive…is there a “neighborhood improvement” association or community organization where folks here collaborate and work on improving the safety and quality of Petworth? No doubt these organizations can be very political and hard to get everyone “singing from the same sheet of music” but thought I’d start there…thanks for your help.

  33. You can join the Yahoo group — http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/MPD-4D/info

    They announce meetings for different neighborhood associations, and also have a daily crime report. They also respond within a day (max) if you have any questions about a police report.

  34. I’m surprised to hear that it was MPD’s “Spotshotter Detection System” because my husband called 911 and it was at least 10 minutes after that before emergency personnel showed up. I couldn’t see a victim, but knew when the ambulance pulled off quietly that they must have been dead.

    Someone mentioned that there’s a $900k house two blocks away, but there’s another house that just sold for $760k just a few doors down from that store in the photo above. We and many of our neighbors around this corner feel that it’s the store brings so much trouble to the corner. The alley behind still does brisk drug commerce every afternoon and there are lookouts/runners hanging in front of the store on a regular basis.

    I just wish some investor would come and buy out the current owners and renovate the entire building. Nice spot for a deli with tables outside. Lots of foot and auto traffic here at morning and evening rush hours. Get a good selection of coffee and snacks for the morning crowd and beer/wine for the evening crowd. Residences upstairs. Would totally transform these blocks.

  35. Why don’t you and your neighbors pool your resources and become those investors? That seems a lot more effective and practical than waiting for some outsider to come in.

  36. Not sure how it is “practical” for a neighbor to get together with their neighbors and raise the $500,000+ (likely more $1,000,000+) to do this project. Most people don’t just have that kind of cash just sitting around.

  37. Or the time. It takes a lot of time to run a business. I know how hard it can be to organize a block-wide yard sale, there’s no way I would want to open a business with that model!!

  38. Communalism is the future as this capitalism fad drys out and rots (as we’re seeing now)…working together only gets easier as more focus on organizing their communities! Many major cities (Philly, Baltimore, NY, Chicago, Portland, Seattle) have several bookstores and coffee shops that are modeled in this manner.

  39. LOL!! Idaho Ave is a brilliant satirist

  40. I feel I’ve been slacking lately with my Anarcho-Syndicalist critiques of our cities happenings ;)

  41. When you say that the store is the issue, do you mean that the people who own/staff it are an issue? Or the clientele is a problem?

    I’ve been stopping by there once a week or so for years and would be extremely surprised if the owners were involved in any of the crime issues on that block. If you told me they were trafficking khat I’d be surprised too, though I know that these corner stores are sometimes involved in that activity.

    They are just really nice, hardworking people. And I hope they aren’t forced out of business if they aren’t engaged in anything criminal.

  42. No, I don’t meant to implicate the owners. I mean that the store is the Broken Windows Theory in action. They’ve made some improvements in recent years, but the building, the lot around it and the yard facing the alley are run down, trashed up, and just all around raggedy. The crumbling retainer wall, the dirt spilling onto the sidewalk and into the street, the knee-high weeds, the graffiti…
    It’s a magnet for riff raff, and when there are warring gangs or crews all around this area, you really don’t want there to be a “hang out” spot near your home where it’s easy to come by and enact retaliation.

  43. I’m at 5th and Randolph and heard the shots early this morning. I looked out my window and saw a police SUV in the alley, but nothing else. My layman’s observation is that some of the drug activity on Shepherd is related to the drug activity on Randolph. There is one house on Randolph (close to 5th street) that is really just bad news. Lots of sketchy characters…

  44. I live a block from this corner and have been in the neighborhood since 2008. I have seen a significant reduction of the crime overall in this area in the past 5 years. Events like this however are always worrisome and sad. We need to continue to demand action from our elected officials to address ongoing problems.
    The 400 ad 500 block of shepherd has a lot of really nice friendly neighbors.

  45. I have been a resident of this neighborhhod for 28years and this has and always will be an issue, although the shootings have gone down considerably. Just to give a little bit of insight to you “NEW” residents NONE of the people that are loitering on the corners are “LOOKOUTS/RUNNERS”. You guys watch too many movies. This is not a DRUG ENTERPRIZE

  46. Granted, we’ve only lived near this corner for about 10 years, but I’ve watched the “loiterers” interacting with people driving up in cars. Maybe the hand-offs I’m seeing are nothing more than an exchange of phone numbers or email addresses.
    Things are certainly better than they were even a few years ago, say the summer of 2010 when fools were just driving by and spraying gunfire out of car windows in broad daylight, but that store continues to be a draw for drug business in the front and back.
    Even simple loitering raises the potential for violence. Recall that mass shooting of people on Capitol Hill a couple of years ago.

  47. so what you are saying is when people are “loitering” it raises the potential for violence? then you make a reference to a mass shhoting on capital hill. I am lost. I will say this as we all know there is and has been illegal activities going on in the petworth area especially between shepherd and taylor st for 20+ years. BUT not every shooting is drug related. again this is not a movie. There are no “TURF WARS” for drug territory in D.C ESPECIALLY in that area. Usually if there is a shooting in that area it is because of LONG standing “beefs” with rival neighborhoods. I agree it is idiotic for these types of actions to take place but until there is some sort of mediation and help from the community and MPD it will continue.

  48. a father on Fifth Street

    I have been a resident for 10 years and have DEFINITELY witnessed the spooters (they are ESPECIALLY amusing to watch standing outside on those winter nights when it’s 20 degrees w/ a wind chill), the hand-offs, and oh – who can forget the ALLEY EXCHANGES I’ve watched constantly for those 10 YEARS?!?

    Let’s get real to talk about a REAL problem that has probably been going on for 20+ years.

  49. 23 years here. And the guys at the corner of 9th and Quincy, of 10th and Quincy, and 10th and Quebec are all absolutely part of selling illicit items. I think they are just dealers though. Too small time to have lookouts and runners other than the schoolkids.

  50. I have 100% seen drug deals behind the alley of that convenience store just in the two months I’ve lived in the neighborhood. I live in the 300 block of Shepherd. I avoid walking up Shepherd after dark now because of this. There’s definitely look out/drug activity happening between 500 and 400 block on a nightly basis.

  51. Wonder if this is an ongoing beef between 5th-N-Taylor and Hilltopp? Isn’t the border Webster Ave where they squared off last year? Watch the bus stop signs for RIP tags….

  52. I live close to the corner of Taylor and 4th and have been concerned about the increase in drug activity at the alley on 4th close to Taylor. I disagree with the person that says they guys standing there are not lookouts or runners. they absolutely are. I’ve seen it for years. they stand, not sit or lean for hours at a time. cars come and go, kids on bikes come up and leave. cars full of people pull up and hang out. through the years, the occasional drive by shooting. Recently someone left a gun on the tire of my neighbors car. the police came. according to the police, they hide their guns and drugs on places like that. While it’s improved over the years, 4th and Taylor is definitely on a bad cycle right now. it’s getting worse. eventually there will be a major shooting, cops will pay attention to that corner and chase them away for a year. that’s the cycle.

    the police park cruisers to watch for speeders. I don’t know why they can’t park in drug nests too to put pressure on them.

    I advise anyone that lives close to that block to call the police whenever you see loitering.

  53. Random note. Friday I noticed a REALLY big blood trail from the Georgia Ave/Petworth Metro stop (in front of the apt/church building where there’s always a sweet pittbull sitting on the steps) that went at least up to Randolph. It was fresh (still red) then, but it’s still there now. Kind of sad to see on my way to and from work. Naively hoping that it wasn’t due to violence.

    Also, if interested… the tipline info for the victim, Joseph David Fowlkes: http://mpdc.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/mpdc/publication/attachments/fowlkes_joseph.pdf

  54. I would like to say that im shocked at the miseducation and lack of knowledge of all the residents responding to the current events. I would like to first say that i no longer live in the neighborhood but keep close ties with the neighborhood because i still have loved ones there. You all make too many assumptions without any facts at all. Runners,lookouts, there really not that sophisticated its just guys hanging around attending to the drug dealing business. There are no bosses or runners. To get to your problem at hand, the shootings yea there was about 10 shootings in the last month or so , one that i was close to when the shots went off. Well truth is Bowser, Gray or no other constituents can change a problem like this because there like you all that have no clue of what they’re dealing with. you all have a full fledge urban street war on your hand and there will be more shootings. random as they may be they are well calculated. This isnt new this has been going on over 20 years , it just has its high and low points. Its a saying “if your not a part of the solution you’re a part of the problem” this goes to all of you. Take charge and do something about it, stop hiding in chat rooms and go out in your neighborhood and be a presence. You need more advice hit me up

  55. Ok, what you got for advice? “Do something about it” is a tad vague…

  56. Oh and the innocent Ethiopian store owners have nothing to do with the crime


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