Sunday, October 31, 2010

From drab to fab

Fort Davis Shopping Center is almost done. Here is a look back when construction started this summer. It is amazing how giving the facade improvement has completely transformed this shopping center from drab to fab. It seems the main thing they have left is to hang some signs and some last minute landscaping. Miss V prays we can get a cafe/coffeehouse.

In the five years that I have lived in Fairfax Village, I have been to this shopping center one time, which was this summer to attend a meeting with some ANC 7B Commissioners. I knew there was a mini-mart here, but I never had a desire to walk up to the shopping center to check it out. The shopping center looks more inviting and I'm actually looking forward to going back to check out the Mini-Mart. I couldn't go in today since I had my pups with me.



A time to tear down

The walls of Francis A. Gregory library are finally coming down. It seems that the demolition was stagnant for a few months. The crushed concrete and twisted rebar (steel bar used to reinforce concrete) is a sign that something better is coming.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wednesday Stew: What's Cooking

CLOSED ITEM
Fairfax Village Shopping Center (partial) - The hedges along Pennsylvania Ave SE have been cut to about 4 feet. I can't wait until DDOT Great Streets project rips those suckers up.

TEMPORARY CLOSED ITEM
Zip Cars - We received an email that Zip Cars isn't adding any new cars to the program at this time.

Public-Private Partnership Possible - This item is closed until the Community Association gets some visionary leaders.

OPEN ITEMS
Street Repair - Part II - The pavement on Fort Davis St was marked and cut when DDOT was working on the 3800 Block of W Street. There has been no action since. Miss V isn't sweating it too much, since the worse part was addressed (Note to readers: the 2000 Block of Fort Davis and 3800 Block of W Street are contiguous). However, we are still waiting for the rest of the repairs.

Vacant Lot on 38th - Still vacant and still a hot mess.

East of the River Community Forum on Sustainability


If you live, work, play or have an interest in the future of Ward 7 & 8 - Come on out...
On October 30th you will have a rare opportunity to help establish the agenda for the future of our communities that lie east of the Anacostia River, whether you live, work or play there. The Anacostia Coordinating Council in conjunction with the Offices of Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry, the Ward 8 Environmental Council and the Sierra Club is hosting:

“How Do We Create Vibrant, Sustainable East of the River Communities?”
Saturday, October 30, 2010
9:00 am—3:00 pm
THEARC
1901 Mississippi Avenue, SE


(Refreshments will be served)

This is a community forum to explore issues, ideas & actions that we can take to shape the future of the places we live. What do we mean by “sustainable?” Take a moment to imagine what type of community we can create, not only today, but over the next ten, twenty, thirty years and beyond. We will look at ways we can make our local neighborhoods healthier, safer, greener, more livable and more prosperous for ourselves and our children. To do so, we need your thoughts, your ideas, and your vision as what needs to be done. We are approaching the next decade of the 21st century, what do you want to see unfold where you live, work and play. The proceedings from this forum will be shared with others in our community, including public officials, who help in its shaping, make sure that you are heard.

Please pass the word along and be there. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me by email: irv.sheffey@sierraclub.org or 202-575-1469 (office/home) or 202-299-6503 (cell).

Meet the Challenger for ANC7B06 Tonight

Robert Jordan is challenging incumbent Commissioner Richard Evans for the 7B06 seat. He's having a Meet and Greet tonight at the Fort Davis Recreation Center from 6-7. Please come out and get to know this candidate.

Earlier this week Jordan was endorsed by Greater Greater Washington.
ANC 7B has traditionally been one of the stronger ANCs in Ward 7, containing Hillcrest, Randle Highlands, Penn Branch, Fairlawn, and Fort Davis neighborhoods. Robert Jordan is challenging incumbent Richard Evans in 7B06, which includes Fairfax Village. Jordan comes with fresh ideas to assist the ANC in running more structured and professional meetings. In addition, he is focused on economic development, public safety, and keeping the community litter free.

Evans has missed several ANC meetings and when he is in attendance he does not stay the entire meeting. Most members of the SMD have no idea who he is as he does not communicate with them. Evans sits on a lot of boards and committees, such as DC's Bicycle Advisory Council, Pedestrian Advisory Council, Deanwood Main Streets, and the East Washington Foundation board. However, his participation in each of those committees has been consistently spotty.
For the full article, click here.

There is no Santa Claus

There is no Santa Claus and there will be no underground PEPCO wires on the Pennsylvania Ave SE Great Streets. Now that we got inconvenient truth out of the way, on to the recap of tonight's Ward 7 Town Hall Meeting. Miss V arrived late because my doctor's appointment in Rockville ran late. When I arrived there was about 20 people in attendance. Mike Maxwell, VP of Asset Management for PEPCO, gave a great presentation about aboveground versus underground. He's going to provide the presentation to attendees, so as soon as it hits my inbox, I will be sure to share with you all.

The highlights from his presentation were:
  • Aboveground lines can have a useful life as long as 80 years. Most underground lines have a useful life around 30 years, with some as short as 15 years.
  • Because of the overhead wire ban the original city has underground wires. Georgetown has underground wires and apparently they have a lot of problems with reliability. Despite all of this all new development in DC; and Montgomery and Prince George's Counties in Maryland have to place the wires underground.
  • Underground is less susceptible to damage due to wind, trees, ice or squirrels.
  • The cost to relocation aboveground to underground is expensive. The $3.5 million/mile figure that is tossed around is only for the primary lines. There is an additional cost for the secondary lines.
  • The cost to property owners (approximately $2200 residential and $16,000 commercial). This assumes the electrical panel in the home is up to code. If it isn't then the panel has to be up to code before PEPCO will underground.
  • To underground in a community, every homeowner would have to agree to pay the fee. For example, if there are 100 homes on the block and only 99 agree, PEPCO will not move forward.
  • Repair time is 1-2 hours for aboveground and about 8-9 hours underground
  • Ward 7 has the 2nd most dense tree canopy. Ward 3 has the densest.
With regards to Pennsylvania Ave Great Street Project, Luan Tran from DDOT stated the following:
  • The estimate for 1.8 miles was about $20 million; however estimates were never prepared specific to the Pennsylvania Ave Great Streets Project. They City did ask for estimates to underground at the commercial areas and that was about $1 million for each.
  • Great Street project was originally only local money ($8-10 million).
The Public Service Commission gave a presentation about the study on reliability of aboveground versus underground. Completely unrelated to the power lines, I was shocked to learn DC gets its power from West Virginia and Maryland. No power is generated locally other than when the power plant in Ward 7 was used on hot days to supplement the transmission grid. I know that the Mirant Plant in Alexandria, VA provides power to DC. I asked a question about the adaptive reuse of the two power plants in DC to produce renewable energy. I think since my question was off topic, it went over people's heads.

All-in-all, it was a good meeting.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Correct info

Councilmember Alexander's office issued a flyer last night to announce a meeting this week with the incorrect date. The PEPCO meeting is tonight. I'm going to look into my crystal ball and predict that this meeting is going to have low attendance.

Ward 7 Town Hall: Pepco Power Parley

Wednesday October 27, Councilmember Alexander will be hosting a Ward 7 Town Hall to discuss the undergrounding of power lines. PEPCO and DDOT will be in attendance. Miss V will be there, but with the disappointed feeling in my heart like I had when I first learned Santa Claus wasn't real. I try to be positive, but I've come to accept that the power lines aren't going underground for the Pennsylvania Ave Great Streets project. **heavy sigh** Many the Nannie Helen Boroughs' Great Street project will fair better.

Update 2:30pm: Meeting is tonight

Monday, October 25, 2010

Signs of Fall in the Village

Our landscaping company planted our fall flowers today. We had pink for the spring and summer. Looking like we are going with yellow and violet for the fall. Our roses are still blooming.


Who will be ANC7B06?




Challenging incumbent Richard Evans for ANC 7B06 is Robert Jordan. He's having a Meet and Greet this Wednesday. Please come out and get to know this candidate

More Presents

Earlier this month Santa and his elves left us a gift in the Fairfax Village Parking lot. Over the weekend we got another gift, a black Nissan Maxima with Maryland tags. I'm not much of a car person, but I would guess it a late 90s earlier 2000s model. The car was stopped on the 3800 Block of V Street. A neighbor called the police after it was left idling for over an hour. Yes, idling, which means on top of our new car we also got the bonus gifts of Nitrogen Oxides and Volatile Organic Compounds, which are two of six criteria pollutants heavily regulated by the US EPA. (Miss V fact: I used to do air quality analysis for transportation projects). I didn't stick around, so I don't know if it was stolen or not, but MPD went through every inch of the car.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Ward 7 needs better bus service

Miss V and neighbor Kelsi co-authored a blog post on Greater Greater Washington about the needs for bus service in Ward 7.
To many living in DC, Ward 7 is that nebulous place somewhere East of the Anacostia River. What many people do not realize is that Ward 7 is a collection of distinct neighborhoods, commercial areas ripe for redevelopment, and large areas of open space. Despite all that Ward 7 has to offer, we only have three Metrorail stops, making the bus system our transportation lifeline.

If you couple our bus dependency with the high unemployment rate, you would think the residents in Ward 7 would get our fair share of resources dedicated to bus enhancements. But rarely does anyone talk about how transportation accessibility can help solve some of these employment and quality of life issues in Ward 7.

Click Here to read the rest of the post.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

PSA 606 Meeting Recap

Miss V is fighting a nasty ear infection with a low-grade fever. Despite feeling less than my best, I drug my hindparts to the PSA 606 meeting. Chief Cathy Lanier and Commander Robert "I keep it cool" Contee were in attendance along with detectives from the stole auto and crime units. Of course our regular police, Lieutenant Hodge, Segarent Harvey, and Officer Persaud were there. Office LaFrance was MIA due to an injury breaking up a melee at Anacostia High School earlier in the week.

The room was jammed packed. The attendance was more than double the usual attendance. I guess that's what happens when Chief Lanier and Commander Contee attend. Their attendance even brought Councilmember Alexander out. Many faces I had never seen before at a PSA 606 or Hillcrest meeting. Hopefully, at least a percentage of the people will continue to attend in the future.

One thing that the crystal clear is the community is concerned about the spike in violent crime in PSA 606. The detectives from stolen auto unit said there is no pattern regarding the types of vehicles or victims they are targeting. The only thing in common about the victim is they are usually distracted such as talking on the telephone or getting packages out of the car.

Even with violent crime up, crime in all other categories has declined. Lt. Hodge mentioned the extra resources PSA 606 have been receiving over the last week. However, since the influx of resources is temporary, residents wanted to know what is the plan for sustainability. Cmdr Contee stated that community policing is important. Cmdr Contee and Lt. Hodge committed to getting the Officers out of their cars and have them get to know the community.

Other issues that were raised
Equity of resources: There was concern that 6th District does not receive the same police resources as other police districts. Cmdr Contee and Chief Lanier stated that in the last four years 6D has received over 100 new officers, which is double than an other police districts. PSA 606 currently has 23 officers and will be getting 4 more when they finish training in the next few weeks.

Truancy: A few people brought up the issue of truancy. There is concern that MPD is a taxi service for these troubled youth. When the kids are returned to school they typically go out the backdoor. To really address truancy there needs to be an assessment in each kid to understand why they are truant. One gentlemen stated that back in his day the truant officer would pick you up and then charge your parents $10 for giving you a ride to school.

Juvenile Crime: Chief Lanier stated that 6% of arrest for all crimes are juveniles, which has remained stagnant over time. However 40% of arrest for armed robberies and car jackings are juveniles. When the juveniles are apprehended they are only being charged by the courts with unauthorized use of a vehicle AKA a slap on the hand. Chief Lanier expressed her frustration that there are several juveniles they have arrested multiple times who are released by the legal system.

Cameras: The red light camera at the intersection of Branch and Alabama Ave isn't working. Cmdr Contee made a note of that. One resident requested additional cameras in the area to assist MPD will solving crimes. Cmdr Contee stated that crime cameras don't deter crime it just displaces it.

I'm sure I missed somethings from the meeting, but this was the information I retained.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thanks to the boys and girls in blue

Miss V would like to give a big thanks to the hardworking men and women of MPD. As a result of the rise in crime, MPD has increased patrols of Fairfax Village as well as other parts of Hillcrest. I received the following information specific to Fairfax Village from the TACT UNIT (aka jump outs) this morning.
The past 2 weeks the TACT UNIT has focused on these recent complaints. As a result numerous arrests were made:

-3900 block of Penn Ave SE we arrested a subject for Carrying a Pistol without a License (CPWL). Recovered was a 9MM handgun and 16 rounds of ammunition.

-3900 block of Southern Avenue SE we arrested a subject selling crack cocaine along the block.

-Southern Avenue SE and Suitland Road SE we arrested a subject selling crack cocaine.

-Penn Ave SE and Southern Ave SE we arrested a subject with a substantial amount of Marijuana (close to a pound).

-2035 38th Street SE we arrested the subject responsible for the drug sales out of this specific building.

School Modernization Video - Woodson HS (October 2010)

HIllcrest gets hipper!!!

Just when we thought Hillcrest was hip with a facebook page they've decided to up the ante. The Hillcrest Community Civic Association Education and Recreation Committee has a blog. If Miss V is elected to Chair the Public Works and Transportation Committee, best believe I will be following suit. All this Hipness is the Hillcrest is too much. What's next a Hillcrest Twitter???

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Special Guest at Wednesday's PSA 606 Meeting

It seems that PSA 606 has experienced an unusual rise in crime over the last 60 days. Miss V has done her best to keep everyone updated on the incidents, but I know I've missed a few due to travels out of the area for a few days. Word on the street is Chief Lanier and Commander "I keep it cool" Contee will be in attendance at this Wednesday's PSA 606 meeting to talk about the rise in crime. The information for the PSA meeting is below

Wednesday October 20, 2010, 6:00 PM
The Lutheran Church of the Holy Comforter
Corner of Branch and Alabama Ave SE

Miss V says Yes to YES

Click the image to read my article in the October East of the River newspaper.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ward 7 Town Hall through my eyes

(Photo courtesy of DCist)
Miss V thought she was being slick by arriving 30 minutes earlier. Boy was I wrong. The parking lot was packed and I ended up parking on O Street. As I was walked in, my first mission was to find a church fan. Something in my soul told me that it was going to end up being hot in the church. Despite a sleeveless shirt AND a church fan, I was roasting. But enough about me.

The Town Hall brought out all the politicos. Of course CM Alexander was one of the first to arrive as the host Ward CM. I know I'm tough on the CM, but I will give her props for one of the best lines of the night. "We must use our political power to move Ward 7 forward." Vincent Orange sat in the front row. CM Thomas walked in as part of Gray's entourage. CM M. Brown snuck in through the side door. CMs Alexander, Thomas, and M Brown sat on the pulpit. For whatever reason it reminded me of a scene from "Coming to America" (don't ask). I was told CM K. Brown was a no-show, because he was attending the DC Vote banquet. Mike Panetta and his DC Vote peeps were in attendance as well.

Gray started out with a speech about his plans as Mayor. I'll be honest to say I zoned in and out, because he's stated these talking points before. Despite the repetitiveness, I give Gray props for giving a consistent message since the start of his campaign. He spent most of the time talking about education. I don't have kids in the school and I have yet to hear a plan for getting young professionals without kids engaged in the school system, so I tuned out. It's not that I don't care, but my level of care is a lot different than someone with kids. I did retain some highlights:
  • Hillcrest and Palisades connection is model for how we can become One City
  • Many public safety workers don't live in DC. Personally, I think affordable communities such as Fairfax Village are IDEAL places for MPD, EMS, Fire and even teachers. Our community needs more homeowners living in their units (but that is a blog post for another day)
  • 37% of adults in DC are functionally illiterate. With all the improper grammar and mispronunciation of words I heard at the Town Hall, apparently adults can't speak either. I want to take this time to thank my dad for teaching me the "King's English".
Eventually, the Q&A period started. I sincerely hope at future Town Halls some of the questions will be vetted ahead of time. Most of the questions people asked were very personal, which needed to be addressed offline. For example, one young lady was asking about identity theft. Then there were people who gave long soliloquies that had no question or suggestion at the conclusion. A question about the MPD-6D substation was asked and Gray stated he fully supports the substation at its current location. He thinks the City should look into purchasing the building (um... that's what we said).

Someone mentioned a non-profit that does HIV testing and some other things (sorry, I have a short attention span and he was just blabbing) is moving into the 2900 Block of Minnesota Ave SE. In my head I was thinking, "I sure hope he's working with the ANC, because if they catch wind it could be the death of the organization at that location."

During the Town Hall, I tweeted the Gray campaign to request they ask some questions people submitted prior to the Town Hall that are less personal. Soon after my question was read "Let's fast forward to the end of this four year term. What does Ward 7 look like?" Gray responded that he would like to see more restaurants, Skyland and Penn Branch Shopping Centers would be completed, and other developments would be moving forward. "People will feel good about living in Ward 7". Me likes that answer. Whether it happens or not, he at least has a vision for the Ward.

One woman stood up to give Rhee props. She was promptly greeted with "Sit down" followed by booos. The meeting ended with three gentlemen from the local electricians union asking what the City will do to enforce the First Source Agreements to hire DC residents. Gray seems to be committed to ensuring jobs for DC residents.

Well that was the Town Hall through my eyes. Thankfully, Miss V didn't die from heat exhaustion and I wore my sport performance deodorant.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Questions for Vince Gray

Miss V thought she was going to miss the Town Hall due to a death in the family, but the funeral was pushed back to the end of the week. I hope given the feedback from the other Town Halls that the Ward 7 Town Hall isn't a pep rally. Ward 7 is at a critical moment. Here are my questions for the Presumptive Mayor-Elect and Chairman Gray.

1) Let's fast forward to the end of this four year term. What does Ward 7 look like?

2) You campaigned on the theme "One City". Ward 7 is divided North versus South, New Residents (typically 30-somethings) versus Native Washingtonians (typically 50+), and Middle Class homeowners versus Public Housing residents. With all these underlying divides, how do you really plan to make us "One City"?

3) It appears that we recycle leadership in Ward 7. By recycle, I mean it is not uncommon to see the same handful of people who been in leadership for multiple years. As Mayor you would be in a position to appoint citizens to serve on Boards and Commissions. What is the plan to reach out to the next generation of leadership for Ward 7?

4) In 2012, Ward 7 will be voting on a Councilmember. What type of leader do you think Ward 7 needs to advance economic development plans, including getting New Communities back on track? What steps will you take to groom this person over the next two years?

5) A phrase said all too often to new residents is that we have to "pay our dues" before we are concerns matter or our voices are even heard. As the Mayor, how do you set the tone of balancing the needs and voices of all the City's residents?

Fall Fitness Schedule at Hillcrest Recreation Center

Is it just me or is this year flying by? Pretty soon it will be a new year and time to make the same resolution to get "fit". Why wait until January 1st? Start now. We have a new organic grocery store to give you healthy fuel for your body. It is almost important to get your body moving.

Now we have a lot of people who talk about fitness, but Miss V walks the walks. I worked as a certified personal trainer for over a year (I quit to focus on my business) and I am a figure competitor (similar to bodybuilding, but more graceful). Despite being a ripe 31 (yes, I know some of you have underwear older than me), I'm often mistaken for early 20s. My dad is 63 years old and it usually confused for mid-40s. One could say we have good genes, but I have to point out that my dad runs 4 miles 3 to 4 times a week. It's just a fact that healthy people look younger.

Below is the Fall health and fitness schedule for the Hillcrest Recreation Center. A couple of my neighbors and I are going to commit to attending the pilates and yoga classes.


Pilates: Start slow and build up speed as you move towards gaining flexibility and muscular strength through upbeat movement and exercises.
Mondays 6:30 – 7:30 pm
Adults and Seniors


Yoga: Experience how yoga can relax your mind and enhance your concentration.
Tuesdays 6:30pm – 7:30pm
Adults and Seniors


Belly Dancing: Gain flexibility, balance, muscular strength, and relaxation through movement and breathing exercises.
Wednesdays 7:00pm – 8:00pm
Adults and Seniors


Tai Chi: Tai chi is a system of movements and positions believed to have developed in 12th Century China. Tai chi techniques aim to address the body and mind as an interconnected system and are traditionally believed to have mental and physical health benefits to improve posture, balance, flexibility, and strength.
Thursdays 7:00 – 8:00pm
Adults and Seniors


Taekwondo: Children are introduced to the quick and powerful taekwondo techniques as used in real life fighting situations. They also learn self-defense techniques and powerful hand and foot skills, develop physical fitness, discipline, self-control, and respect for others all while having fun.
Monday & Wednesday 5:00 – 6:00
Children ages 4-15
*Inquire w/ Instructor (Safety equipment is required for participation.)


Walking Healthy: Start slow and build up speed as you move towards a progressive walking for fitness program. Includes indoor and outdoor walks.
Monday - Friday 10:00am – 12:00pm
Seniors

Friday, October 8, 2010

LOCATION CHANGE - Ward 7 Town Hall

Presumptive Mayor-elect and Chairman (PMAC... for short) Vince Gray will be hosting a town hall in each of DC's eight wards. Click here to submit questions or comments to PMAC Gray prior to the Town Hall. The Ward 7 info is below

Ward 7 Town Hall
October 12, 2010
6:30 - 8:30 PM
Pennsylvania Ave Baptist Church
3000 Pennsylvania Ave SE

Reminders out the Wahzooo

Miss V will be offline until Monday. So I leave you with the following reminders

October 9, 2010 - Second Saturday Solutions
October 12, 2010 - Ward 7 Townhall Meeting
October 13, 2010 - Curbside Cupcake comes East of the River

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Carjacking #3


Hot off the wire from PSA 606.

Armed Carjacking
Address: 2530 36th Pl., SE
Date: 10/02/2010
Time: 1202 Hours
Stolen Vehicle: 2008 Red Dodge Avenger, MD Tag 2FNF55
Recovered Address: Last seen 64th and Dix St., NE

Circumstances: C-1 REPORTS, WHILE CLEANING THE LISTED VEHICLE SHE WAS APPROACHED FROM BEHIND BY S-1 AND S-2, S-1 POINTED A BLACK REVOVLER IN HER FACE AND STATED "GET ON THE GROUND AND GIVE ME YOUR KEYS OR I'LL KILL YOU" TO WHICH C-1 COMPLIED. S-2 THAN PATTED C-1 POCKETS. C-1 ASKED IF SHE COULD MOVE AND S-2 REPLIED "NO IF YOU MOVE I"LL BLAST YOU". S-1 AND S-2 THEN ENTERED C-1'S VEHICLE, AND FLED THE SCENE TRAVELING NORTHWEST ON 36TH PLACE TOWARD CAMDEN ST, SE. AUTO THEFT 9 LAST SPOTTED THE VEHICLE ON 64 STREET AT DIX STREET NE, HEADED TOWARD P.G. COUNTY, AND THE VEHICLE HAD A BLOWN TIRE.

Suspect(1): Black Male, 14-15 years old, 5’3”-5’4”, 125-140 lbs., Dark complexion, wearing a black shirt, black pants and a black hat, armed with a black revolver.

Suspect(2): Black Male, 14-15 years old, 5’3”-5’4”, 125-140 lbs., Dark complexion, wearing a black shirt, black pants and a black hat.


The descriptions of the subjects for all three incidents appear to be the same and they appear to be targeting Hillcrest. PSA 606 has issued a warning for our area. I know this isn't usual for us, but please STAY ALERT!!! Call if you see anyone matching these descriptions.

What are those things with the bikes?


At this Hillcrest Community Civic Association Meeting someone asked about the station thingies with the bikes. These stations are part of the Capital Bikeshare Program. YOU, residents of Hillcrest can use these bikes to commute to work, the grocery store, the library, or where ever your little heart desires. Visit the Capital Bikeshare Program website for more information and station locations, but Miss V will give you the scrolling marquee version of how it all works.
  1. Pay an annual membership ($50 for limited time)
  2. Get a "key" in the mail that is unique to you.
  3. Use key to borrow a bike for up to 24 hours (free for first 30 minutes then nominal fee after)
Okay Miss V, how does this work in practical terms? Alright, let's say for example you want to go from Hillcrest to Anacostia Library.
  1. Walk to the nearest station. Since you live in Hillcrest it's either at Good Hope or Penn Branch Shopping Centers. As a side note: Miss V is advocating for a third one closer to Fairfax Village at the triangle parcel between 38th Street, Alabama Ave, and Pennsylvania Ave SE. Putting one here would link Good Hope, Penn Branch, Fort Davis and Fairfax Village Shopping Centers. Not to mention service Fairfax Village which has about 1,000 units. But I digress...
  2. Use your key to get a bike from the station
  3. Put on your helmet (safety first, people)
  4. Ride bike to Anacostia Library
  5. Place bike in station at the library
That's it. Five easy steps. I hope that some of you will become members of the program.

Someone left us a gift

Someone left Fairfax Village a gift. The "nice" people left us a shiny red Cadillac with no tires. It was left some time in the middle of the night. Apparently it was stolen from PG County earlier in the day. This is the second car stolen from PC County with DC tags that have been given to us in the last few weeks. It's like Christmas came earlier. Lt Hodge assured us they were going to increase patrols of the Fairfax Village lots during the night shift. Hopefully, MPD will be able to find our little Santa Claus and his elves. Maybe I should leave them milk and cookies.

*In case it isn't painfully obvious, I'm being facetious*

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Community crime alert from MPD PSA 606

As part of our SEE SOMETHING-SAY SOMETHING campaign, The Sixth Police Districts Patrol Service Area (PSA) 606 urges our business community, residents and visitors to increase your awareness of persons around you while getting into or out of your vehicle.

We are investigating individuals that are riding through our community looking for you to enter or exit your vehicle while being distracted by speaking or texting on a cellular telephone or PDA devices or placing items into or taking items out of your vehicles. Once distracted, these individuals will approach you from behind and rob you of your belongings and/or take your vehicle. These Robberies and Carjackings have been committed by individuals described by our victims as:

Black male suspects between the ages of 16-20 years of age, wearing dreadlock style hair styles, with 3 to 4 riding together in cars looking for potential victims.

Should you see individuals matching this description or actions that make you suspicious or make you feel uncomfortable, immediately call 9-1-1 and report your LOCATION, actions that made you suspicious, clothing DESCRIPTIONS of these individual(s) or the MAKE, MODEL, COLOR and TAG NUMBER of those vehicles cruising repeatedly thru the neighborhood that cause you concern.

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD YOU TAKE ANY ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS ON YOUR OWN.

Immediately call or ask that others call 9-1-1 for you and request an immediate law enforcement response.

The Sixth Police District and PSA 606 also request that while at your place of business or at home, turn on all outside lights in both the front and back of your home and/or business after 5 PM to illuminate your business, home, driveway or parking space and to cast additional light sources toward our sidewalks and roadways.

Should you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact Patrol Service Area 606 Lieutenant Mark Hodge via E-Mail at mark.hodge@dc.gov or on 202-489-8338.

PSA 606 will be hosting our Monthly Patrol Service Area Community Meeting on Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at 6:00 PM at the Lutheran Church of the Holy Comforter, 3319 Alabama Avenue, SE located on the corner of Alabama and Branch Avenues, SE.

Cupcakes anyone???

Ladies and Gentlemen of East of the River.... Hot off the press. Curbside Cupcake will be venturing to our side of town on Wednesday, October 13, 2010 at 10:30 AM at the Big Chair on Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE.

Neighbors please come out and support. Perhaps this will encourage other food trucks to hobo there way over here or encourage some of our residents to create mobile trucks that service this side.

Getting serious

There was another carjacking today from 2900 Block of Nelson St SE off Minnesota Ave SE. Not sure if they car that was used in the carjacking or was stolen, but one of the cars is a 1996 Cadillac Eldorado with DC Tags. For the record, this was not in PSA 606, but wanted to take this opportunity to give you some tips.

When driving stay alert. When you stop at an intersection, give yourself some room between you and the car in front of you to manveur. Make sure to use your side and rear view mirrors to be aware of your surroundings.

As far as I know all the carjacking have been at gun point. If you are carjacked, GIVE UP THE VEHICLE. A car is not worth your life. In each case the vehicle has been recovered within 48 hours. Follow their instructions and do not make any sudden moves.

Try to remember as much detail as possible. I understand it's a stressful situation, but try to remember the description of the vehicle and as much as the tag number.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Second Saturday Solutions

Second Saturday Solutions
Saturday October 9, 2010
10am - noon
Ward 8 Farmers Market
1310 Southern Ave SE (United Medical Center)

http://ward8farmersmarket.com/
Bus Lines: A2, D12, D14, P12, W2 & PG Co. 33.
Metro Stop: Southern Avenue
Look for the SSS table when you arrive.

Topic:
Healthy eating

Speaker: Representative from the Center for Nutrition, Diet and Health (University of the District of Columbia) (Invited)

Why you should attend: To connect with old friends and meet some new ones that live in Ward 7 and Ward 8. To support the Ward 8 Farmers Market. To discuss solutions to challenges that we all encounter in our neighborhoods.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Time to be Nosey

It's time to be a little nosey. Since I've lived in PSA 606, crime has been relatively low compared to other parts of the City. I don't know if its the economy, a full moon, or what, but there has been a rise of violent crime in the last few weeks.

Earlier this month there was an armed robbery in Fairfax Village on the 3800 block of W St SE around 11:15 pm. The suspects used a sawed off shotgun. On September 26th there was a carjacking between 12:28 and 12:32 at 2418 34th Street SE. Four black men with silver handguns in a blue Toyota SUV with partial DC tags 188 attacked a woman as she was getting out of her car. They wrestled her to the ground and stole her purse containing credit cards, cellphones, and keys. They took her vehicle and fled East on Camden Street SE.

Then Saturday afternoon as we were leaving the Hillcrest Meeting the Public Safety Chair received a call from Lt. Hodge that a carjacking had just occurred at 2500 36th Street off Southern Ave SE. This time it was two black men in a blue Toyota Highlander with DC partial tags AV 841 or AV 814.

Fairfax Village hasn't been immune to the carjackings. Remember, we had one back in March from the Village IV parking lot. In addition, as recent as two weeks ago a car stolen in PG County was abandoned in the Village IV lot.

While hanging with my one of my girls at Target, my phone starts blowing up like I owe someone child support. My neighbors were calling me to tell me around the 7 o'clock hour Saturday evening a man was stabbed on Fairfax Village VII (3800 block of V St SE). After being stabbed the man walked up 38th Street SE and collapsed on Alabama Ave SE near the Papa John's. When I arrived back home around 9pm, the area looked like a scene from CSI. 38th Street was blocked off between V Street and Pennsylvania Ave SE. Alabama was blocked off from 38th Street to Pennsylvania Ave SE. While I do not have all the details, based on what I'm hearing from neighbors I do not thing this particular crime was random.

I've said it before and I will keep saying it... We ALL need to be the eyes and ears on the street for MPD. If you notice anything or anyone that is suspicious, trust your gut instinct and call 9-1-1. If you see a car up on cinder blocks on the street or in a lot, call 9-1-1. If you see people sitting in a car and it makes the hairs on your arms stand up, call 9-1-1, because typically "bad people" will scout the neighborhood before they do the crime.

Do NOT call 311 for police matters. You'll be routed to 911 anyway. For those of you living in Fairfax Village or close to the Maryland border, call 911 from your landline. If you call from a cellphone you may be routed to Maryland's dispatcher first. If you have to call from your cellphone make sure to ask if you are speaking to the DC dispatcher.

If you don't feel that it rises to the level of an emergency there are other options, listed below:
  • Text 50411 from your cell phone
  • Call the anonymous tip line (888) 919-CRIME
To stay informed about crime in the neighborhood