Crime Alert: Stop Walking Around Talking on Your Cell Phones!

Alert Your Kids Who Are the Most Likely to be Victimized.

Monday night (Dec. 10), a post on the Newhilleast Listserv reported that a woman jogging around Lincoln Park in the early evening was the victim of a mugging. A man came up from behind her and snatched her phone from her hand and then ran off down 11th St SE.

She ran after him, other people chased him and he dropped her phone, so she recovered her property. Three men had appeared, to several people, to be casing the park for opportunities. It was reported that an officer who came to the scene said the same thing had happened on South Carolina Ave, SE the same evening. These incidents are happening all the time across the city, at all times of the day.

Adults and kids are walking around totally immersed in the conversations on their cell phones and then suddenly their phones are snatched from their hands. Or they are attacked and forced to give up phones, bags and other electronics.

The police continue to tell us that the most irresponsible street behavior is talking on our cell phones while we are walking. We can’t hear what is happening around us; we can’t hear the blow of a car horn; we think because we are on the phone we are safe “because if anything happens, our friend, or Mom, etc will hear us.” And what good will that do when we are robbed?

These are not isolated and rare incidents. As just one example, look at these three street robberies on Capitol Hill taken from the Washington Post, Local Living section, Nov. 29:

  • 600 block of C Street, SE, 9:25 am, Nov 19: a man threatened a woman near a bank, then robbed her of her bag.
  • 300 block of North Carolina Ave, SE, Nov. 18,  1:40 pm: Two males threatened a pedestrian and robbed her of a cell phone.
  • 8th and G Street, SE, 4:15 pm: A person snatched a cell phone from a female at a bus stop.

These crimes occurred in broad daylight at 9:25 a.m., at 1:40 p.m.; at 4:15 p.m.

Obviously, people are not just being attacked at night. Young teenagers are targets during the day. Nannies and child care workers should also be alert.

We live in a wonderful community, probably a safer community in many ways then the suburbs, but there is no excuse for being careless, and especially for not giving our children the safety rules that they need to protect themselves.

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