Turn your porch light on -- Right

This is a discussion on Turn your porch light on -- Right within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; How about arming yourselves? Neighbors React to Armed Robbery Neighbors React to Armed Robbery Recent armed robbery on South Pitt Street prompts neighborhood concern. By ...

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Thread: Turn your porch light on -- Right

  1. #1
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    Thumbs down Turn your porch light on -- Right

    How about arming yourselves?

    Neighbors React to Armed Robbery

    Neighbors React to Armed Robbery
    Recent armed robbery on South Pitt Street prompts neighborhood concern.

    By Michael Lee Pope
    Thursday, February 26, 2009

    For one Old Town couple, the walk home from having dinner at O’Connell’s Restaurant one recent Saturday evening became a brush with death that has changed their lives. Shortly after entering the 200 block of South Pitt Street, the couple noticed three young black males emerge from behind a brick wall on the west wide of the street. One of the men grabbed the woman around the waist and shoved the barrel of a revolver to the side of her neck. The other two men each pointed a pistol at the man.

    "Kill the *****," one of the attackers said, according to a report the woman made to the Alexandria Police Department.

    The man threw his wallet on the ground, hoping to give the assailants what they wanted. The woman followed her husband’s lead, throwing her purse on the ground. The attackers then grabbed the loot and ran into the dark streets of Old Town, leaving the distraught husband and wife with disturbing memories that they now say they relive each time they walk to and from King Street. No arrests have been made in the case, although police officials say they have identified suspects from "across the river."

    "I am concerned with what I feel is becoming a trend of people coming from other jurisdictions to commit crime in the city," said Police Chief David Baker. "Old Town is particularly susceptible to this because it’s relatively affluent and it’s really easy to get in and get out very quickly."

    IN THE LAST TWO weeks, according to police data, Old Town has experienced an array of criminal activity: 22 incidents of theft, 11 incidents of theft from vehicle, 11 assaults, nine drug offenses, six arrests for people who were drunk in public, four arrests for people who were driving under the influence, three stolen vehicles, two robberies, two cases of disorderly conduct, two people arrested for walking around Old Town an open container of alcohol, one case breaking and entering case and one sexual assault.

    But it was the Feb. 7 armed robbery that sparked the concerns of many people who live in Old Town. News of the incident traveled fast, over elliptical machines at the gym and in blast e-mail messages to friends and neighbors. When a neighbor of the victim began organizing a meeting with the Police Department, the event quickly swelled from a living room gathering to a standing-room-only crowd packed into the Old Presbyterian Meeting House’s fellowship hall.

    "Suddenly something that once seemed safe no longer seems safe," said Susan Swain, who organized the community meeting between Old Town residents and the Police Department. "Logic tells us that with the economy in trouble we could see an increase in crime this year."

    Mindful of the potential for increased crime, city budget officials spared public-safety agencies from the reductions that were made in other areas. Although City Manager Jim Hartmann suggested cutting more than 120 jobs earlier this month, none of those jobs are in the Police Department. City Council members are actually considering raising the budget for the police, one of the few city departments that could end up with more money next year. Officers who work in the domestic violence unit, special response unit and the court liaison unit will be moved to patrol.

    "In difficult economic climate, crime tends to rise," said Councilman Justin Wilson. "That’s why police and fire are the only two major departments that will have increased funding this year."

    GATHERING AT THE Old Presbyterian Meeting House for the community meeting this week, Capt. Tammy Hooper assured Old Town residents that their neighborhood was not experiencing a crime spree. She presented a number of year-to-date statistics that showed crime is down compared to this time last year, although she said a number of items have been stolen from purses left in shopping carts at the Whole Foods Market. She assured neighborhood residents that the Police Department has increased patrols in Old Town, and she said one of the best things residents could do to make their neighborhood more safe was to increase lighting.

    "You can help that situation by turning your porch light on," said Hooper, who oversees policing in Old Town.

    "Amen," said a woman in the front row.
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    Senior Member Array gwhall57's Avatar
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    Yeah, turn on your porch light. That way, the hoods can see better to shoot you down...
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    VIP Member Array havegunjoe's Avatar
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    Make sure the BG's can see what they are stealing. it sounds like the couple saw the BG's across the street but must have kept on going probably hoping nothing bad would happen. A little situational awareness and avoidance technique training would have helped too.
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    Senior Member Array dunndw's Avatar
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    I keep my front porch light on, my aim is better that way
    "If I was an extremist, our founding fathers would all be extremists," he said. "Without them, we wouldn't have our independence. We'd be a disarmed British system of feudal subjectivity."

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    Member Array dtweeks's Avatar
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    Why don't they just put up a "No Guns" sign?....

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    Quote Originally Posted by dtweeks View Post
    Why don't they just put up a "No Guns" sign?....
    Bingo! They should ban guns in Alexandria. Or have a "turn-in-a-gun-for-a-free-meal-at-Outback" day. Or increase penalties for "gun crimes." That way all the criminals will really think twice before they bring a gun to Old Town.

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    Senior Member Array ErikGr7's Avatar
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    Turning the porch light isn't going to do it.

    I will say from reading the story..they were ambushed
    and I don't think the gentleman could have done anything
    even if he was a CCW holder. 3 against one is poor odds
    too.

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    You guys aren't thinking right...

    the porch lights are just used to help identify the targets and camouflage the muzzle flash when the targets get shot...
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    Senior Member Array PaulG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ErikGr7 View Post
    Turning the porch light isn't going to do it.

    I will say from reading the story..they were ambushed
    and I don't think the gentleman could have done anything
    even if he was a CCW holder. 3 against one is poor odds
    too.
    Only thing that could have helped them here is to be armed and practice situational awareness.
    fortiter in re, suaviter in modo (resolutely in action, gently in manner).

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    VIP Member Array Thanis's Avatar
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    I always has the porch light on. I just changed it about three months ago to an engery eff. bult. Has saved me money alone (as the bulb does not burn out as often. Every night I place a chair in front of the front door. I have christmas like bells on the doors.

    I also have four loaded firearms.
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    "I am concerned with what I feel is becoming a trend of people coming from other jurisdictions to commit crime in the city," said Police Chief David Baker. "Old Town is particularly susceptible to this because it’s relatively affluent and it’s really easy to get in and get out very quickly."

    This guy is joking right? We are talking Old Town Alexandria, right? With the public housing project right in the middle of it? The same place that saw an APD officer shot in the head in the late 1980's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ctr View Post
    This guy is joking right? We are talking Old Town Alexandria, right? With the public housing project right in the middle of it? The same place that saw an APD officer shot in the head in the late 1980's.

    I was wondering how long it would take someone to pick up on that.

    It's been 40 + years since I lived there. However, I was back up there in early December, and the hotel I stayed at had the parking garage sealed with chain link w/ roller doors not just the flimsy bar that go up and down. Sort of a clue there.
    Μολὼν λαβέ

    I'm just one root in a grassroots organization. No one should assume that I speak for the VCDL.

    I am neither an attorney-at-law nor I do play one on television or on the internet. No one should assumes my opinion is legal advice.

    Veni, Vidi, Velcro

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    Someone needs to inform these citizens on how to go about getting their CCW permits and what type of weapons to buy...that'll help!

    Stay armed...fight crime/shoot back...stay safe!
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    Distinguished Member Array Colin's Avatar
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    Actually lights do deter crimmanls and a good line of defense, but only as part of a overall defensive plan, both passive and active.

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    3 against 1

    "I will say from reading the story..they were ambushed
    and I don't think the gentleman could have done anything
    even if he was a CCW holder. 3 against one is poor odds
    too."

    May not be good odds, but all you need to do is drop one of them and who wants to go first? Even dumb criminals are motivated by self preservation.
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