Monday, March 1, 2010

What the Hell is going on,

This is the letter sent to several offices around town. I was shocked by the lack of response. Silly of me I know.

And why haven’t we heard about it? I found out this weekend that there has been a rash of break ins’ and motor vehicle thefts in my neighborhood.

How do you suppose this came to my attention?

That would be when my truck was stolen from my drive way.

It was mentioned in passing by the responding officer. I live within walking distance of a police station. I never see them around, but I know where the office is. What I see on my street is drivers cutting through from College to Shipyard, at speeds up to sixty miles an hour. I have seen motorcycles go by so fast that you could only guess at the color of the bike. I don’t spend a lot of time in the front watching traffic, but it doesn’t take long for someone to blow by like they are going to a fire. The exception would be the Police Dept. I never see them. I have called the Police to my home and asked them to sit in my drive and clock speeders. They won’t do it.
This afternoon my wife and I started looking to see just what we could find regarding crime in our area.

Not very much.

The wife did several searches, had a bash with Google, and couldn’t find any report of my vehicle being stolen, or the other two being ransacked. We did find five motor vehicle break-ins and one theft, in our neighborhood.

I can’t call that a cover up, but the word sure didn’t get out.

I subscribe to the “newspaper”, and my wife reads it thoroughly, daily. We had no idea that there had been any problem close by, not to mention just down the street. That would be eleven property crimes, five this weekend. There have been twenty eight autos stolen in the last month in our district, thirteen recovered, who knew? Certainly no one in my neighborhood.

Why is that important?

Because when things start to happen you take extra precautions, as we do now.

Does the Star News have a crime reporter? If not, why not? If so, why aren’t they doing their job? I can sit in my living room and find out which restaurants in New York will allow me to use their toilets without being a customer , but I can’t find out about crime in my neighborhood. I know more about Haiti today than I can find out about my police department.

There are sixty two officers working from the Southeast Division Office, I had to walk in and ask. I did get a print out of the short title for the reports filed since Dec 1. It seems that if you are on College, Shipyard or Hollytree, you’re covered, otherwise you’re on your own.

There are some things I do know about our police. They are arguably some of the worst drivers in town. They might do better if they were paying attention, but most of the officers I see on the road are on the phone or computer.

I have been sitting at a traffic light at College and Shipyard and watched a car blow a red light by several seconds, it was in my line of sight and I knew the driver saw the light turn red soon enough to stop. The Police officer had his attention on his computer and never looked up.

Good job for the team dude.

I don’t even want to start with our TV “News Stations”, if someone isn’t on fire or laying dead in the street they don’t even notice. I hear more about John Edwards than crime in town, did anyone notice that the Enquirer scooped everybody? What does that say about reporting around here?

Crime reporting was once considered to be important, a public service, no more apparently. I heard the story regarding graft on the ABC board until my ears hurt, so what, politics as usual. It was, however, crime reporting, or at least embarrassing.

I actually got a call back from the Commander of Div. 6 (Southeast Station), a very nice Lieutenant. He did me the courtesy of researching the crimes and auto thefts in town. The situation isn’t as bad as it seems. It is, however, bad enough. The initial information I was given at the local station was twenty eight auto thefts this month, that’s almost one a day. There were several towed vehicles that were reported stolen.

Which drags up the question of why didn’t the people at the station know? I have been offered the opportunity to do a ride along, and I certainly will. I was informed that crimes in my area are down by forty nine percent, which is good, unless you happen to fall into the remaining fifty one percent.

It would be nice to have hard numbers for the amount of actual criminal activity. Ten percent of fifty isn’t bad, ten percent of fifty thousand is another matter all together. I will now be on the E-Mail list for the Div. 6 information on recent crimes. I also found out that the PD has a public information officer who reportedly sends out communications to the papers and TV stations.

What, exactly, is done with those items remains to be seen.

So, what do I want?I want PD to step up and be an example to other departments and drivers in the area.

I want the Star News to inform the subscribers of problems in their area, I want our local TV stations to leave the national news to the networks and get on the street to report the issues in our neighborhoods.

I’m tired of rumor mongers and mullet wrappers, I want reporters not “personalities”.

Up date: My truck was recovered five days later with relatively minor damage. The insurance has already paid me for the damage. Loss of electronics and such will cost me about a grand. The castle will get a monitored security system. I am contemplating unpleasantness for any future issues.

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