Response to Shootings in Shaw: “will be manned by Third District PSA 308 Officers familiar with the ongoing problems of this area 24 hours a day, 7 days a week”

by Prince Of Petworth August 13, 2015 at 9:13 am 75 Comments


From MPD:

“In response to the recent acts of violence in the area of 7th and O Street NW, the Third District Police Station has set up a Community Outreach Post in the 700 block of O Street NW. A tent structure at this location will be manned by Third District PSA 308 Officers familiar with the ongoing problems of this area 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Officers will be on hand to answer questions, take reports and hand out pamphlets to citizens ready to make positive changes in this community.

PSA 308 Lieutenant Deborah Pearce will be at this location Tuesday thru Saturday, 6:00 pm to 8:00, for any issues needing the attention of a police official. Lieutenant Deborah Pearce can be reach at [email protected] or on 202-498-9833>

The citizens of the District of Columbia and the dedicated officers of the Third District, working together, can end the violence and continue the progress that has been ongoing over the past several years.”

and from the Mayor:

“Dear Washingtonians,

As Mayor, my top priority is your safety. While crime as a whole remains flat, the District of Columbia has experienced a spike in violent crime in 2015, similar to what is happening in cities across the country – from Los Angeles to Milwaukee to New York. I want you to know that my Administration is working around the clock to prevent crime, respond swiftly when it happens, and hold criminals accountable.

Over the past several weeks, I have been meeting with my public safety team on a frequent basis, talking to community leaders, and working with our federal public safety partners to address violent crime in the District. Meanwhile, Police Chief Lanier continues to keep MPD officers on the forefront of effective policing. Just last week, the Chief hosted a national summit with big city police chiefs to identify trends and share best practices.

We are using proven methods and trying new ones to tackle crime. MPD has increased its street presence through a combination of foot, bike, and Segway patrols. We are beefing up our patrols in neighborhoods that have experienced higher levels of crime. And we are using every tool at our disposal to prevent the violence that occurs from synthetic drugs – including our new law that punishes bad acting businesses that sell these extremely harmful and dangerous substances.

We are also working hard to close cases: we will find and arrest individuals that commit violent crime. We work closely with Acting U.S. Attorney Vincent Cohen and our federal partners to ensure that criminals are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and that their sentences reflect the harm they cause to our communities.

Most importantly, we are listening to the residents of DC. Remember, during an emergency, you should call 911. And if you have information about a crime, we urge you to send an anonymous message to MPD’s text tip line (50411). If you see something, please say something.

As we fight crime, we continue to build stronger ties between the police force and District residents. Our officers regularly attend ANC and community meetings, and they conduct frequent neighborhood walkthroughs. Residents can sign up for MPD’s neighborhood listserv groups HERE.

Together, we are stronger. We need your continued involvement and support to maintain the strength and vibrancy of our community. To find ways to get involved, please reach out to your ward representative at my Office of Community Relations and Services by clicking HERE.

With innovative policing, a committed public safety team and your help, we will keep DC on the right path toward safety and security.

Muriel Bowser

  • Jamin Jimmy

    Can we get one on Benning?

    • pstreet202

      Benning Rd hasn’t “arrived” yet. In a few years when the yuppie count becomes sustainable, you will get more police attention. I lived in Shaw for several years and it seemed only once professionals moved into did the police presence significantly increase. Before the first wave of newcomers you rarely saw police (only post shooting) but now they are all over the neighborhood all day.

      • Anonymous

        Exactly! And that’s what people don’t get when they hear longtime residents complain about gentrification. The assumption is that the people who have lived in these neighborhoods for years were comfortable with crime and never called for more policing. The fact is that they’ve called for more policing for years but were pretty much ignored. But once the luxury rentals and trendy bars and restaurants arrived, that’s when it became a priority to address the crime problem.

        • shmoo

          believe me when I say i agree with you that longtime residents dont like to live with crime and had complained about crime long before any of the gentrification came to these neighborhoods. However, i dont understand why THAT would be the reason people are complaining about gentrification. I think longtime residents complain about gentrification because if they rent, they risk having their house sold out from under them, or if they own, they run the risk of having their property taxes hiked to a level they cant afford.

          if anything, gentrification is what is causing their gripes about crime to finally be addressed. not saying that it is fair that they were ignored for as long as they were, but at least it is finally getting looked at.

          • Anonymous

            The complaint is that they don’t get to reap the reward of having their gripes about crime finally being addressed because the neighborhood becomes too expensive for them to live in.
            So they end up getting pushed to some other low income, higher crime area and have to wait until that neighborhood gets discovered for the police resources to arrive. At which point, that neighborhood becomes too expensive.

    • shmoo

      didnt that happen a few years ago with the military style police checkpoints they put up in Trinidad??

      • wmm

        I remember this vividly. Wild times!

  • Accountering

    I can get behind this. I understand Anon MPDs thinking about being assigned to guard a light tower, and how ridiculous that may be, but I like the idea of this. 2 or 3 officers at this corner 24/7 means they can walk around a bit, and go talk to the people hanging out and such. I like that we are trying something, so I will give limited kudos to Bowser.
    With that said, who wants to take bets that she has no idea whatsoever where Milwaukee is?

    • GBinCH

      I wonder if this is a tactic that came out of the big city Police Chief’s summit. Not just manning a post but having a senior officer (Lieutenant) present at times. I like the idea of a senior officer available and the hours make sense to me – right after work so a convenient time when residents can stop by to discuss their concerns.
      I also wonder if we’re going to start seeing a whole bunch of new tactics as a result of the summit. I still think a lot of the issues we’re seeing in DC come from lax prosecution rather than ineffective policing (the cops do a good job overall), but I’m interested to see what new tactics and outreach MPD might engage in.

    • madmonk28

      I agree. We’ve been saying that we want the city to do something and they are trying something new. Hopefully, they’ll experiment with a variety of techniques and keep the ones that are productive. I kind of feel bad for the cops that they only have a table and awning to sit under 24/7.

      • Accountering

        Meh, I don’t. It is part of the gig. I have all the respect in the world for our police, but if this is the right thing to do, then we should do it.
        I do think we should be paying our police more. DC should never lose a good officer to the suburbs for monetary reasons.

    • MarkQ

      “With that said, who wants to take bets that she has no idea whatsoever where Milwaukee is?”

      I don’t get it. Why wouldn’t she know where Milwaukee is?

      • Q


      • Accountering

        Because the average American likely doesn’t know where Milwaukee is, and she has done nothing to show me she is anything above average when it comes to her knowledge of anything besides pandering to her base, studying things, forming committees, bringing all of the stakeholders to the table, and speaking in platitudes.
        I think it is a legit bet, that even despite her referencing it in this statement, she doesn’t know that Milwaukee is a large city on one of the great lakes, and that the city is in Wisconsin.

    • Anon MPD

      So there’s another comment from not me, further down, but since you mentioned it. I think people should feel safe in their neighborhoods, clearly. And if having officers under this tent make people feel safe, then that’s a positive. If they do staff it with officers who are known in the neighborhood, then that’s also a win because there’s a chance people might stop by to talk about what they know. Anything that stops the “stop snitching” culture is helpful.

      However, this tent will not stop the shootings. And it will remove officers from patrol to sit here, which leaves the section less staffed. This is just a reality. And people need to know that these are trade offs. So understand that if it takes a little longer for cops to come for a report or a drunk in an alley, because they’re being pulled from a PSA on the other side. I just wished we had much more frank discussions about this.

    • Q

      Recently, I was waiting for the bus on 14th and U after work at around 6pm. There were a couple of cops leaning against their car on the corner, and I thought, cool, I like having cops out, getting to know the hood. Then I look up to see a teenager doing a wheelie on his bicycle, no hands, going the wrong way down 14th for almost the length of the Reeves Center. Seriously dangerous–he was swerving all over the place and cars could barely get out of the way. The cops just kept talking to each other. I made eye contact with one of them, jaw dropped and pointed at the kid (I was too far away to talk to them), and the cop just turned his head and went back to talking to his partner. When the kid hit U, he just turned around and did the same thing right back up 14th. They never noticed or even broke conversation. I’m all for neighborhood presence, but I hope this type of thing is the exception and not the rule.

  • Euclid

    Just tear down Gibson Plaza and 1330 and be done with it. I feel there are not enough Spanish tapas places, maybe a yoga studio would work too. Honestly, what I’d like to see is reasonably priced housing tied to city or similar employment. You’re a teacher at a public or charter school, a police officer, public works, GS-4 just starting out… great, you have 1st option on this location and if you retire, you don’t lose your status. Very low income should not be in high density developments and should not be clustered all together, why has DC not learned this basic rule? Spread the lowest income units evenly across the entire city; offer the best subsidized locations to those working jobs that are vital but not necessarily the best paying.

    • BK2H

      As a commercial real estate guy, I could not agree more. Common sense says incentivize developers to provided mixed-income in the form of tax abatements if the land is controlled by the developer. For City owned land, sell the land at a significant discount to the developer in exchange for workforce or affordable housing units mixed in with market rate units. Projects are a relic of the past…

    • Accountering

      I agree with this. I think we SHOULD be more selective as to who gets our subsidized housing. Warehousing people who will never have the skills to make it in this city in projects is a huge disaster. People love to trot out the “Teachers and Firefighters” bit. Perhaps build a building and make it eligible ONLY for employees of DCFD, MPD, and DCPS/Charter Schools.

      • Neighbor

        Surely you see how this isn’t remotely “inclusive”, right? As such, elected officials gain very little with poor voters. They have a plethora of other ways to win over the unions of the organizations mentioned above. Politics is a game.

        • Accountering

          I understand. I wasn’t referencing politics, just saying something that in principal, seems to accomplish a couple of goals, and would be a huge net positive in my mind. It doesn’t have to be practical or politically possible to be a good idea :)

    • ET

      They are doing that already and have been they just haven’t done it with all the public housing and maybe they don’t incentivize enough. Look at what they did with the residences build on the old KY Courts in SE, the Ellen Wilson development, possibly a good bit of the stretch of East Capitol on the other side of the river, and many of the incentives for many of the newer developments. Could there be more yes, will all public housing go – not for awhile.

  • Worth2Cents

    There have been plenty of posts on the spike in crime, and I know marijuana of the synthetic variety is the flavor of the week, but has anyone thought of the change in marijuana law as a driver for some of the rise in violence. “That makes no sense, when you relax a law why would crime increase?”. But perhaps because some drug offenders are less concerned of being caught with (now legal) drugs, focus has shifted elsewhere. ‘Give an inch, take a mile’ of sorts. What I don’t know – if the increase of violent crime is drug related. Maybe no one knows. What I do know – my views on the current state of marijuana law is not popular according to the results of last fall’s vote. What I also know – I respect the views of others, especially the majority, and don’t carry around a soap box to stand on.

    • mail

      It’s a good point, and a strong argument for taking the next step and establishing an appropriate regulatory framework for legal recreational sales.

      • tom

        I see the benefits of legalizing pot. But, I do wonder if the gangs will just move into some other contraband item: harder (or cheaper) drugs, gun trafficking, stolen property, etc?

        After all, people always say gang-violence due to bootlegging went away with prohibition. But, that ignores the fact that gangs have managed to find other black market activities to fight over.

        Could this be an unintended consequences thing? Without drugs to sell, the gangs shift to stolen property and that results in a massive rise in burglary/theft? It seems at the end of the day, the drivers of gang activity is some complex mix of culture and economic opportunity. Legalizing drugs does nothing to deal with the “root causes” issue.

        • guest1

          then decriminalize it all. seems to be working in other countries. Put all that saved money into education. If that’s too much, decriminalize using, but keep selling criminal.

          • GBinCH

            Decriminalize theft or property? I read tom’s argument as being the decriminalization of drugs is pushing gangs into different types of activity. I don’t know if the facts support the argument, but your response seems weird.
            And are you really suggesting decriminalizing something like meth? The argument for weed is straight forward enough, but there are lots of drugs out there that are incredibly harmful and shouldn’t be legal.

          • guest1

            yes, decriminalize drugs. (not property, sorry, i was unclear). Portugal did this 14 years ago, and all hell didn’t break loose. In fact, it has helped in many ways. Drugs are still illegal, but not criminal.

            And for the record, I live near several of the shootings/murder.

    • neighbor

      Yes, legalization here is a HUGE mess. Since there’s no legitimate outlet for sales, it’s just a huge boon to drug dealers. Even though selling is technically illegal MPD has basically stopped prosecuting it. There’s a light tower in Petworth that essentially watches a drug corner 24/7 and does nothing. Last week I saw a group of guys in a car smoking immediately in front of the van (illegal) then drive off (DUI) and the officer didn’t say a word. What a disgrace and an embarrassment to the community.

    • ET

      Maybe, but the spike in crime isn’t just in DC it is all over and most places haven’t legalized in any way. I am not sure what is going on but I have to wonder if all the attention of police shooting of African American men with little justice (at least depending on their view) – and the shooting in Charleston may not have had impact. Meaning there is an even more F*** YOU attitude than there was before.

    • Neighbor

      You realize that these shootings aren’t happening over marijuana sales, right? Your connection seems tenuous at best.

      • Worth2Cents

        Admittedly, no: “What I don’t know – if the increase of violent crime is drug related. Maybe no one knows.”

  • Jim Slicio

    It is clear from her 6-month progress report that the number one priority of the Bowser administration is affordable housing. Her first success story in the funding priorities section of the report highlights priority #1: securing funding for a program that will not start until next year. Not only that but, the public safety priority (#3 on the list) focuses on securing funding for body cameras( $5m). MPDC are not murders, Mayor Bowser (Queen of the Koopa), the murderous folks are the ones living in your affordable housing with ‘Grandma’. Maybe upgrade the GPS tracking ankle bracelets infrastructure and monitoring and improve all aspects of CCTV around high crime areas. Especially government owned and operated housing complexes. It pains me to remember the little girl who was shot up while playing at the playground at Park Morton and the perpetrators were are still on the lam as they were not recorded because the CCTV cameras covering that area were out of order. It doesn’t take a genius to improve on public safety, though it does take an idiot to mess it up this badly.

    With that ramble, I do agree that setting up a post is necessary. I feel bad for those tat will have to staff it though, with all the rain we get and all.

  • petworther

    How about some buy busts and jump out squads? How about actually prosecuting some people? This will get us nowhere.

    • d

      Have you been on a jury in DC? Not called for jury duty, but served on a jury?

      I’ve been on a few and they all were for PWID of hard drugs and in every case the jury was hung because 1-2 people absolutely would not convict no matter what. Jury nullification is real.

      I mean I get that people want more prosecution, but if prosecutors aren’t succeeding in getting convictions then it is a waste of everyone’s time and money.

      The fact is that our justice system has an ugly legacy of racism, and our country’s drug policies and policing have reflected that and as a result there are many eligible jurors in this city who just will not convict someone on drug charges no matter the evidence. This is a problem not easily undone, not least so because removing systemic racism from the justice system cannot be accomplished with the snap of ones fingers–and even if it could the perception would linger long past the reality.

      I can see both sides. I don’t love having dealers on my neighborhood, but I also don’t love that we imprison such a huge population, and disproportionately imprison black me I. I would also like to be on fewer juries, and thankfully all the newcomers to DC have increased the pool so now it’s every 3 years instead of 2 :)

      • anonymous

        This is an interesting post. However, a functioning society requires people to hear evidence without bias and vote guilty if that’s where the evidence leads. If they want to bring in their past prejudices, they need to admit it to themselves and the court and not participate in juries! These people who cannot be convinced no matter the evidence (video tapes, etc) are really a detriment to our system of justice and to the larger society, who has to deal with the people they acquit. We can blame it on past injustices, but it doesn’t correct the current issues. Indeed, it probably exacerbates problems as other people view this stubborn refusal to convict the guilty as utterly dysfunctional.

        • d

          I would agree, I take my responsibility as a juror extremely seriously (which is why I’d like to do it less frequently, because I don’t like being responsible for deciding someone’s future!).

          I’m just pointing out that there is a reason we see what some people perceive to be limited prosecution. Prosecution is expensive, and convictions on drug cases are extremely hard to come by in this environment. Right or wrong, it is the reality and I don’t blame MPD and the prosecutor’s office necessarily for their hesitancy to go all in on relatively low level drug arrests and charges when this is the frequent outcome.

      • AdmsMgn

        I served on a jury last fall and completely agree. This was for a drug bust in NE and weapons, drugs and drug making paraphernalia were all found. One of the guns even had his prints.

        Some on the jury weren’t willing to render a guilty verdict despite the evidence against him. I think race played a factor with some jurors. It was just after Ferguson and I suspect there were some who just didn’t want to send another black man to jail. In the end, it was a hung jury.

      • Sydney

        Remember though: between 95 and 99 percent of these very cases are “settled” with the Assistant US Attorney who absolutely controls what the Grand Jury hears (mostly MPD police officers coached on how to fib). And yes, the racket of drugs, weapons and violence in DC is even more grotesque than the twisted judicial system.

    • Shawer

      I disagree. I live one block away from all these shootings at 6th/7th and O, and you see the troublemakers run home when the police are present. As long as they’re not out on this busy street where so many of our neighborhood’s children play, then it is making a difference. Shaw residents fought hard for a police presence and we finally got one for the foreseeable future. Today they were out there bright and early, introducing themselves and being very pleasant and neighborly. A Gibson Plaza resident was pissed off about something and was drop kicking his car, and one of the officers went over, calmed him down, and helped him out with what he needed. Let’s give the officers the time they need to make a difference here before channeling the cynicism.

  • Charlie Bengel (ANC 2F06)

    I spent about an hour chatting with officers at the tent yesterday evening. If you live in the area I encourage you to stop by, especially between 6-8pm when Lt Pearce is there. She previously supervised the highly successful, but now disbanded, Third District Vice Squad (1,400 arrests and 100 gun recoveries in 2014) and is a wealth of knowledge.

  • Anon

    This is welcome news. There was an officer (on foot) stationed outside the Shaw metro station (8th St. entrance) this morning. The police presence is much more noticeable in Shaw these days.

  • Brett M

    There should already have been police presence 24/7 in this neighborhood and every neighborhood. The lack of community policing in the Cathy Lanier era is why total crime has gone up steadily since 2007. Lanier is reactionary, it’s “all hands on deck” when we see spikes in crimes, or a silly MPD tent AFTER people complain about violence.

    Cathy Lanier has run her course and needs to be replaced.

    • Does DC have the manpower to have a cop in every neighborhood (however we define that) 24/7? That seems suspect.

      • Brett M

        Yes. 66 to 68 police officers per 1000 residents is by far the highest of any major city in the country and perhaps the world.

  • Susan

    Can we get one at 17th and Independence SE and near Potomac Gardens?

  • Shaw Res

    oh yeah, I saw these guys this morning watching videos on their phones! Two thumbs way up.

  • 13thandV

    I mean–great, and all, but I live one block west of where all these shootings have happened (old username!), and now they’re just going to be happening more on my block. NIMBY-ism forever, I guess–but I just don’t see this as a solution.

  • Annonm MPD

    This is all a smoke show. This is already happening around the city. But, MPD is so short staffed this will now take officers off the street to respond to calls. Other parts of the city, if an officer leaves their post they get written up. This tent, light tower, or fixed post details do a few things. 1. Puts a bandaid on a problem 2. There will be probably two officer every shift responding to calls in that area. 3. All the issues will just move over two blocks or so. 4. Finally it’s a waste of time, becsuse whenever they disband the table it will start happening again.

    If anyone saw the piece in the Washington Post about the woodland Terrance, if a MPD officer gets out of their car or walks around they are then written up.

    For some reason the Brass believe these things work (in reality it works because residents see cops in the area and assume the crime stops. It doesn’t, moves it a few blocks away if at all.) when the rank and file realize the only way to fix any problem in the city is the brass and city council need to take off the handcuffs they put onMPD.

    • Anonymous

      How can a city swimming in revenue from sky high property tax and speed cameras not invest in the most basic need of public safety – staffing a sufficient amount of police?

      • Accountering

        We do not have “sky high” property taxes. The property tax rate in DC is .85c/$100 in assessed value. If you own and live in your own home, the first $70k is tax free. A $500,000 house in DC would pay $3655 in yearly tax. The same house in Montgomery, Fairfax, Arlington or PG would pay between $5,000 to $7,000 in tax. Get your facts right if you are going to spew drivel.

      • ParkViewRes

        Sky high property tax? Umm DC has some of the LOWEST PROPERTY TAXES in the country? Not to mention the two deductions of homestead and elderly. I pay about the same as my sister who lives out in the Va country and my house is worth a lot more than hers. Secondly, the speed cameras are not raking in the money like they used to…they’re facing a nearly $40 million budget shortfall in part because the police department didn’t replace batteries in some speed cameras and other traffic enforcement cameras. Lastly, the starting pay for MPD sucks. They need to be paid more and especially when they’re competing with Arlington Co, Montgomery Co, etc. And police officer isn’t the most popular job in America these days.

    • JM

      AnonMPD –

      You make good points, but it would be interesting to hear from you (and your colleagues) about what practical steps *should* be taken by the Administration. Obviously we’d like tougher sentencing, long-term reduction in poverty, etc, but there are near-term needs this Summer.

      Maybe PoP would consider a guest post from members of MPD (anonymous) that would detail specific recommendations that the readership could lobby for.

      • Anonymous

        1) I think it’s funny that you assume because someone uses MPD as their “username” he or she is really a police officer. Or maybe there is a “no lying on listservs” rule I am not aware of.

        2) “Taking the handcuffs off MPD” is a pretty meaningless solution. How exactly are MPD officer handcuffed? I suppose that if we throw the Constitution out of the window and allow police to stop and interrogate people, maybe even take them down to the precinct for questioning just because they feel like it and not because of any particularized suspicion that the person committed a crime, we would probably have less crime. Seems like an extreme solution to me. But I guess if you are not part of the cohort who is likely to get targeted by these tactics, it’s not that big of a deal.

        • Accountering

          Because most people don’t tend to believe in conspiracy theories. They guy posts as Anon MPD, has for a while, and is more knowledgable about DC specific policing issues than anyone else on this site. Good enough for me.

        • Annon MPD

          “Take the handcuffs off MPD” I meant in the aspect, that USAO, the brass, or what have you don’t want us making arrest. When we make arrest, it adds to the crime report and drives down the property value. Not only that, the brass has to answer to why there are more stats of arrests to their brass. So in turn, like all jobs the “sh*t rolls down hill”. USAO, will “no paper” cases because it’s not worth their time or what have you. So in turn, there is no punishment for people breaking the law. I am not saying throw people away and lock the key. All I am asking for the courts to give them community service or anything. Because how it’s goes now, there is basically no punishment. If y’all remember the stabbing at McFaddens a while back (that ended up closing the place down) the defendant was charged and convicted of a misdemeanor and NO jail time, for stabbing people. Also, I won’t say how much time I have own besides between 2 to 10 years, my class graduated with around 20-30 officers, there are 8 of us left. Majority all moved onto other departments because it’s so bad here. I won’t even say how much time I have on because that is how terrifying the brass is here.

      • Anon MPD

        So I didn’t write this. But it was bound to happen that another colleague would want to weigh in. Maybe we need different logins or something to keep it straight.

        If you want actual solutions?

        – Return Vice to the Districts and let them handle drug crimes in their areas where they have the knowledge and the experience to do so.
        – Get rid of all these bullshit specialized units like Mountain Bike and others. Pour those guys back into patrol and have them handle radio runs.
        -Allow cops to make stops and frisk people without being accused of harassment.
        -Have more officers dedicated to intel and finding out the root cause for these crimes,

        But most importantly, there needs to be way more agencies out on the street with us, from Health to DPR to Housing. They need to respond with us and handle issues and situations that are not in our wheelhouse. These are not 9-5 problems that occur Monday to Friday..

        • Anon MPD (2)

          Sorry brother, I’ll change mine!

  • PotomacGirl

    Offering a quote from Gregg Pemberton, Treasurer DC Police Union blog:
    “The MPD is hemorrhaging personnel at an alarming rate. We’ve lost over 550 officers in the past 19 months. That’s more than 5 times the size of an average police department. Only about half of that number is due to retirements. The other half is made up of outstanding, well-trained officers who are not willing to put up with toxic management. The largest group of officers leaving is those with between 2 and 10 years of service. The Union has learned through its own research that these officers are leaving in droves for other departments where the working conditions are better and organizational stress is at a minimum. This leaves the remaining officers even more overworked, understaffed, and less likely to be able to respond quickly to crime, or even conduct preventative measures during patrol.”

    • Brett M

      Sorry but DC has the highest police officers per capita of all major cities in America and perhaps the world. It’s 50% higher than New York, yet DC has a higher crime rate.

      More police does not equal less crime. Better policing does.

      • JS

        This gets said on every single crime thread, and it’s just as wrong as the first time it was posted. “Police Officers” =/= MPD patrol cops. Are the US Treasury Police going to respond when I call them to report a buglarly in progess?

        • Brett M

          I am talking about MPD only. Our highest-in-the-country officer per capita rate EXCLUDES federal police.

          • Anon MPD (2)

            Even though I disagree with you. You are using the stats that the city is giving you. Last I checked the chief said there were 3,800 MPD officers. That is beyond a lie, the best guess is around 3K at max. Divide that by 700K and not even including the amount of tourist that come every day.

      • Accountering

        This a useless stat. Please don’t throw this out there again. There are TONS of polices officers in DC doing things like protecting the capital, protecting O, and protecting the printing press (I kid you not)
        Our actual sworn MPD officers (when you back out the ones who are basically working full time escorting politicians and helping with O etc) is right on par with other major cities. Except we have the resources where we should demand better.

        • Anonymous

          I think this is a useless response without an exact count of the “TONS” of police officers who are doing these other things.

          • Accountering

            You can very easily look up the numbers. You threw out a stat of total officers in DC, and I responded that a huge number of them do not work for MPD, and as such are irrelevant.
            If you are going to put stats out there out of context, when someone calls you on the poor context, it isn’t their job to do your research for you to correct your numbers. You are the one (either intentionally or ignorantly) misusing figures.

          • Accountering

            I apologize for saying you threw out the original number. You did not in fact.

          • Anonymous

            So in other words, you have no idea what percentage of MPD officers are doing these other things? You just know that TONS of them are.

      • Anonymous

        Really interesting:
        Note that the next two cities on the list are Baltimore, and Chicago.
        Sort of like how for years people clamored for DC to spent more $ on education while at the time DC was spending (and may still be spending) more $ per pupil than any other city in the US while still being at or near the bottom in every meaningful category of educational achievement.

        • Accountering

          Oh man, you are on a role today! Just a couple of quotes that show the above numbers, again, are not relevant. These are from Wikipedia:
          “The MPD has a unique role among law enforcement in the United States in that it serves as a local police department, with county, state and federal responsibilities, and is under a municipal government but operates under federal authority.”
          “The Metropolitan Police is the only law enforcement agency allowed under law to shut down roads within the District and is also responsible for the protection of the President of the United States.”
          So the responsibilities that MPD undertakes are wildly different than any other jurisdiction. There are no county police, or state police here. MPD is it, and as such, has no support, so of course they will be larger force due to the increased responsibility.
          As far as $ per capita on education, yes, we are third behind Boston and NY. As far as results, we solidly in the middle of large cities, and are ahead of Detroit, Baltimore, Fresno, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Milwaukee, and even with cities like Los Angeles and Chicago. If you are going to throw out stats and figures, please use them appropriately.

      • Anon MPD

        Can you describe what you mean by “better policing?” Up thread you mentioned that every neighborhood should have officers in it, which I’m taking to mean foot beats. Is that right? We don’t have enough cops to have officers on foot as well as handling 911 calls.

        Think about it. You give me a block to patrol, alone. So I can handle any crimes on that block that happened in the past (reports) but nothing in progress as I’m by myself. That”s policy, by the way, and it’s good policy. So now I need another foot beat or a 99 car (solo officer) to come over. And that’s just on my beat. What happens for calls three blocks away? I can’t leave my block, lest it be unprotected and vulnerable in my absence. So I may look good, but in terms of getting bang for your buck, I’m window dressing.

        If you want good response times and officers on foot, then we need more officers. Like 500 to 1,000 more officers. And maybe we do have a lot of officers per capita, but many of those are on dignitary details, which few other cities have. We do more escorts than NYC and you need people for those jobs.

        I look forward to your suggestions for ways to police neighborhoods better while also not hiring more cops.

        • fka Shawess

          Sorry if you’ve already answered this question, Anon MPD, but I’m curious what you think the barriers are to hiring more cops. It sounds like there’s a consensus that more officers are needed, so what are the bottlenecks?

          • Anon MPD (2)

            Well there’s a few ways to fix the retention of officers. (For some reason the brass still think it is 2008 and that is hard to find LEO jobs nationwide. It isn’t, it’s actually pretty easy now.) but here’s my ideas.
            1. Pay a living wage. Starting salary is 49K in DC. I truly believe the best way to get great police service have that force involved in the community by living in it. Without living with roommates, you can’t afford to live in the city. (Just a fun fact, when Chief Lanier last renewed her contract she told the city council that she deserved to be paid like a big city police chief. I totally agree with that, she does. But when we went to get a pay raise she told the city council that we (MPD, rank and file) don’t do anything more than the surrounding suburban departments…..)
            2. Replace the brass, MPDC issue with the brass is much worse than NYPD brasses issue with their brass.
            3. Have the department be more family friendly. All districts have taken days off on weekends. So in the district and shift I work from end of May till probably end of September only 5 officers have days off during the weekend.
            4. Stop the fix posts, most police officers here want to work and help the community. But sticking them on a corner and threatening them with disciplinary actions if they leave that post is what kills their moral to do work. (The department does this because it looks good to y’all when there are cops sitting at a table. But it is an absolute waste of time, it makes crime stop in that one block.)
            5. Have the chief actually listen to class action lawsuits that she lost. (AHOD’s were found to be against our contract. But guess what, we have one at the end of August and in October.)

            Overall, get new management, pay us, and make it more employe friendly.

            Whenever someone replaces Chief Lanier, I feel bad for him or her. They are going to have an uphill battle to climb. I will be leaving the department soon. I am sure every MPD member has their own issues but I am sure I hit some of them.

  • JMF

    Where was they mayor’s statement originally posted? I want to click on the HERE link at the end of the statement…

  • Shawz

    I think that, in lieu of more MPD, we’d get a lot more bang for our buck investing in increased court, prosecution, and prison/supervision resources. MPD already lets a lot of things slide because they know that they have limited bandwidth to deal with the people they catch. Addressing the bottleneck would allow MPD to address a lot of the more minor offenses (property crimes, etc) where a current sense of impunity contributes to a culture of lawlessness.


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