Very Minor Damage to African American Civil War Memorial, Huge Discrepancy as to How Many Gunshots were Fired Thursday Night

by Prince Of Petworth December 30, 2013 at 12:30 pm 18 Comments

Vermont and U Street, NW

On Friday morning we learned gunshots were fired around 9:30pm by the African American Civil War Memorial and 10th/U Street metro entrance. Council Member Graham informed residents:

“I have confirmed with MPD that as many as 6-7 shots were fired between two persons just outside the entrance to the U Street Metro”

However the Washington Post reported:

“Frank Smith, the museum’s director, said police told him more than 60 shots were fired about 9:30 p.m. Two people who live steps from the Metro station described gunfire between youths in the plaza and others in a car on U Street. No arrests have been made.”

I inquired with MPD if they could clarify how many shots were fired and they responded to me:

“The matter is under investigation. No arrests at this time. Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the police at (202) 727-9099.”


Fortunately damage was very minor. From the African American Civil War Memorial Museum:

It is with much regret that we report minor damage to the African American Civil War Memorial, a national monument dedicated to the 209,145 black Union soldiers and their officers who joined President Lincoln in the Civil War to end slavery and keep America united under one flag. The damage occurred on Thursday night around 9 pm when gunmen opened fire damaging Wall of Honor plaque # 124 on Wall D. The damage occurred at the very corner of Regimental unit 121 which is a regiment that was organized in Kentucky. The museum hours of operations are 10 am to 6:30 pm and was closed at the time of the incident. The damage was confined to a small area where two plaques are joined together. According to police reports, no one was injured even though multiple shots were fired.

“We can assure the public that the monument is safe and secure and open to the public. Today is Saturday and I can report that we have had multiple visitors to the monument and museum and that the metro station is open for business and continues to be used by the riding public” said Frank Smith, Founding Director of the African American Civil War Memorial and Museum.

It is too early to know what the cost of repairs will be although we can assure the public that we will work with the National Park Service to make sure the repairs are done as soon as possible and in a way that meets the standards set by the designers who worked so hard to build the Nation’s first monument to the 209,145 United States Colored Troops who served the country so honorably during the America Civil War.


  • Anonymous

    “U Street or Kabul? You decide!”

    • Anonymous

      You clearly have never been to a war zone.

  • Anonymous

    sure with those soldiers could fire back. idiots.

  • dcloafer

    So 60 shots are fired in a crowded area, and the WaPo headline is about the minor damage to this statue. Also, you have to really dig on their website to find that article.

    Am I the only one who’s confused about crime reporting in DC?

    • Anonymous

      Perfect example of why the WaPo’s popularity and readership has dropped significantly.

  • Anonymous


  • Shaking my head

    hoodlum youth. this story is the epitome of irony. gangland style shootout at a monument for black soldiers who fought for their future freedom to do stupid things.

    • Anonymous

      Seriously. These guys need to get a stern lecture from Bill Cosby.

  • Anonymous

    It happened around 9:36pm and there were about 15 shell casings around.

  • anon

    Very ironic. This reminds me of Chris Rock’s bit about Martin Luther King Boulevard.

  • Anonymous

    I bet my life on it that there were only 5-6, no more than 10. I was a block away and heard the shots. That is some crappy reporting.

    • Anonymous

      Sounds like they just mis-heard what they were told. “Six-to-seven” sounds a lot like “sixty-seven” which is where the “more than 60” could have come from. But, yes, a reporter probably should not have taken mention of 60+ shots fired in a running gun battle on a busy street and not asked “Pardon, could you please confirm I heard that number correctly?”

      • Kam

        Pretty much.

      • annonny

        I agree this is the most likely explanation. 60+ shots fired would have resulted in more damage and/or more injuries.

  • anony

    This is why we can’t have nice things.

    • Anonymous

      what an annoying and trite statement. of course we have nice things.

      • yaaaawwn

        NY resolution for 2014: get sense of humor back.

        • Anonymous

          and perhaps some originality.


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