MPD announced last night that they made an arrest in the afternoon shooting outside of the Columbia Heights metro Thursday afternoon. The suspect is 19-year-old Devyn Lavar Black. He will be charged with assault with a dangerous weapon (not attempted homicide?). In the words of Inspector Jacob Kishter, “As a result of the arrest, a dangerous gang member has been taken off of the streets.”

DCist is reporting, with confirmation from Jim Graham, that the suspect was an intern at Graham’s office. Wow.

The 1300 block of Columbia Road is quickly becoming the most violent in Columbia Heights, if not the city. Friday night at 7 pm, there was another shooting where a 51-year-old man suffered gunshot wounds on his wrist and thigh. He is expected to recover from his injuries.

Meanwhile, the light tower on the block that was meant to deter violent crimes, was turned off/absent at the time of the shooting. Officer Edward Delgado promises that he has “directed that a light tower be deployed into the area to ensure that these bandits to [sic] not use the darkness of the night to facilitate illegal activities.”

Jim Graham has also posted on the MPD 3rd district listserv voicing his concern over the light tower:

Where was the Light Tower, which had been there and operative for weeks since the Paul Jones was murdered in January. And, if there was no light tower, why was it taken away? Who is responsible here? How many police were on the block?

The Light Tower was off last night. Shots were fired. It was not there earlier tonight. Shots were fired.

One would think, after last night’s violence, that all measures would be taken on what is now a block riddled with gang warfare.

Amen, Jim Graham. This block needs to be highly policed and all possible measures need to be implemented to decrease the violence.

Last night, near the Columbia Heights recreation center (at the 140o block of Girard), a teenager was shot and wounded in a hail of bullets. At about 7:30 pm, the teen and other people outside of the recreation center were approached by gunmen, at least one in a ski mask. The gunmen then opened fire with no warning.

In the Washington Post article, Jim Graham is quoted as saying the shooting is most likely gang related, though doesn’t seem to give any reason why.

That block of Columbia Heights has seen a lot of violence, in the summer of 2007 it seemed like there was a shooting there every week. I had a friend who lived on the block and often he had to tell the police that he lived there, and could he please get to his apartment, because it was so often blocked off by police tape.

Isn’t it great though, that the Washington Post is writing about this incident, where no one was killed and the most severe injury (from what I can tell) was a thumb wounded by a bullet, and neglects to do barely any reporting on the fatal shooting over the weekend (I’m sorry, that article doesn’t count). I don’t understand how local news works sometimes, why does the Post see this incident as more worthy to cover? I can cobble my news together from blogs, listservs, and local news outlets and sometimes get a good sense of what’s happening in my neighborhood and surrounding ones. Sometimes I can’t. I really wish there were better coverage of my neighborhood. If there’s some news source that does it well, I’m all ears.

UPDATE: I’m calling out the Washington Post even more on this. They did some crappy reporting on that article. First of all, they didn’t interview Jim Graham, they just took a statement from a press release he issued and made it seem as though they had interviewed him. They did the same thing with a quotation from MPD officer Edward Delgado, taking a statement he had posted on the 3rd district listserv and representing as if they had spoken to him directly. Additionally, they seem to have taken parts of WJLA’s story on the shooting Friday night and represented as if they had interviewed these people on their own. They both interview a witness named Siobhan Gavagan and use the same quotation about her hiding under a car during the shooting. Shame on you, Washington Post reporters, for your sloppy, and in some parts, dishonest reporting.

In an article detailing the arrest of two teens in connection with the Columbia Heights stabbing homicide Friday, the Washington Post references court documents as naming the stabbing as MS-13 related. The victim was ambushed by a group of teens, and then beaten, kicked, and ultimately stabbed to death.

So suspicions confirmed, at least one of the four murders in the past few days was gang related, though the connections still remain fuzzy.

This is getting ridiculous. Here’s a round up of violence in the area:

I don’t know if there’s much I can say that hasn’t already been said or that won’t come off as terribly cliche. I can say though, that I am disheartened with the level of violence in my neighborhood and the surrounding neighbhorhoods in the past week.

UPDATE: Man, after just writing this DCist links to info on ANOTHER fatal shooting in my neighborhood. This one is about 4 blocks from my apartment. There was a fatal shooting at the skating park at 11th and Q around 3:30 am, so far not much more info. I don’t know how safe I feel in my ‘hood anymore.

UPDATE 2: DCist reports that there have been multiple arrests on the fatal stabbing in Columbia Heights on Friday. Good to know that at least law enforcement seems to be moving quickly to arrest individuals responsible for the attacks.

Yikes, this has really been a violent few days in my neighborhood. A teen was stabbed at the U street metro station Saturday night, around 9:20 pm. He actually got on the metro afterwards and then got off at Columbia Heights (presumably to flee from his stabbers?), where he finally received medical attention. The teen’s wounds aren’t  life-threatening.

Holy crap. Between the three incidents I reported on Thursday and the fatal stabbing in Columbia Heights on Friday and this, a lot of blood has been shed. It hasn’t been the most violent few days in DC for the year, but it certainly has been concentrated in my neighborhood and the surrounding ones.  I know my neighborhood is still safe, that these incidents are all most likely gang-related, but it still doesn’t make a girl feel good to know someone was stabbed a block away from where she lives.