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Checkpoint Ends, Thomas Calls for Meeting in Trinidad

Council member Harry Thomas Jr. (D-Ward 5) is hosting a meeting in the Trinidad community tonight to begin, he says, "the healing process" after a wave of violence in the Northeast neighborhood. That violence yielded a controversial police checkpoint program in which officers stopped motorists trying to access one street in the neighborhood, Montello Avenue. Yesterday, MPD Chief Cathy L. Lanier suspended the program, which has raised civil liberties concerns.

Tonight's meeting, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Joseph Cole Recreation Center, will include professional counselors, members of the clergy and civic leaders to work with residents. It's being billed as an "interactive session."

"The shootings and other violence occurring in Trinidad are taking their toll on neighborhood residents," Thomas said in a statement. "It's times like this when we need to reach out to our neighbors and help them along the path of healing."

The center is at 1200 Morse Street NE.

By Marcia Davis  |  June 13, 2008; 8:00 AM ET
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety , D.C. Council  
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If you really want to help this neighborhood, then I beleive that you will do efforts continously, not just one week of the month. These people needs guidance, strong guidance from individuals who were once like them and has moved on to the truth. They have no positive followers to follow!!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 13, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

I am encouraged by the "interactive session" taking place because of this very controversial initiative, and if it makes the neighborhood a safer place for all--the residents--most importantly, then it was effective. I hope it begins a conversation that includes every voice, including the voices of the younger people who are the focus of this initiative (in my opinion). It is a good start, and I hope the policy is critically reviewed and solutions sought that will make the Trinidad community a safe place to live, drive, and walk.

Thank you for this opportunity to express my views on this subject, or action.

Posted by: | June 13, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I am a former resident of Trinidad and still have family ties there. I am saddened at the rash of brazen murders that take place in this area. I feel that the problem lies in the 14-25 year old generation that feel "hopeless" as to their futures. I feel they have no real guidance. Where are their parent? I understand that you can not watch over a grown child 24/7 but if you have any inkling that your child is out there doing what they are not suposed to do, you as the parent need to intervene. You know if your child is not doing the right thing. Don't turn your head and then feel bad when something tragic goes down.

Again I understand that you can not make a grown person do anything but as a parent your job never ends.I am the parent to four and as they get older there will be obstacles to overcome and attitudes to be dealt with because they want to hang out with Joe on the corner....Why? Why do you want to hang out on the corner? The younger ones want to reach the "fame" of the ones before them that are either dead or in jail. They need to know that fast money ain't always good money. I am not sure what the solution to this problem is, but I do understand that it is a growing issue and more parents need to be held accountable for the actions of their children.

Posted by: wenlew | June 13, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Chief Lanier, A. Fenty and AG Nickels act as though they are complete morons without a shred of common sense among them. Why in the world would the Citizens of D.C. allow these three stooges to hold the offices they currently have?

If one truly wants safe neighborhoods - then the residents need to make them safe by exercising "Common Sense" tactics.

"Lanier says she has gotten e-mail after e-mail from residents who welcome the police presence. She is also hearing from people she passes on the street.
On Tuesday, Lanier says she saw an elderly man sitting on his porch eating dinner.
"When I spoke with him, he said, 'You know, I don't have air conditioning, so it's so much easier for me to sit outside ... and have my dinner, but I wouldn't be sitting here if your folks weren't here,' " Lanier says."
The above mentioned 'elderly man' having a meal on his porch would be far better off by having a .45 ACP on his hip & an AR-15 within easy reach. If he, and his neighbors were well-armed and trained to hit their targets accurately - there would be only ONE more drive-by shooting. The first carload of punks which attempted to disturb the area by shooting at residents or pedestrians could be met with a barrage hot lead. Lanier could order a tow truck to remove the shot-up vehicle after the Coroner removed the remains of the punks.
It would be a cold day in hell before some other jerks would attempt to cause havoc on that street. Enjoy your meal, always protect your hearing by proper use of ear plugs when necessary.

Posted by: Dan Wild | June 15, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Wild, I dont think you understand the nature of this violence. Retaliation with violence would just cause reverse retaliation with more violence. Do you honestly think they've never been shot back at? The last thing ordinary citizens want to do is get involved in that mess. Trying to protect the neighborhood in that way will just get you killed. How do you think gang violence operates? It's just retaliation with violent force on a continual basis! Shooting at thugs is certainly not "common sense".

Posted by: Britt | June 16, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

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