Monday, December 20, 2010
Open Letter to the City of New Orleans: Crime in the Streets - Part 1
To whom it may concern; I'm writing because I have seen no trace of these crimes reported in the news. There are articles about street repaving & the Saints, of course. Even a blurb with Superintendent Serpas telling us the best thing to do is get out on our porches. Considering this rash of brutal home invasions and violence, maybe it's not a great idea. I have also searched for news of these events on every New Orleans Crime Map I could find. There has been nothing listed on any of these, to date: http://spotcrime.com/la/new+orleans http://groups.google.com/group/NOPD5-EmailBlast http://www.nola.com/crime/orleans/ My concern is that others living in these communities will not have any warning whatsoever that this is going on. My calls to the 5th District were futile at best, as every question was answered with a question, as though I were trapped in an Abbott & Costello routine. Never did the answering officer tell me they couldn't comment on an ongoing investigation or make any professional comment, but asked me repeatedly, "Well, do you THINK its safe?" and things of that nature. I find this sort of one-up-manship and rudeness useless, juvenile & not at all the professional attitude required to police our city streets. The idea that NOPD officers would engage in such tactics when citizens within their district are being robbed, raped, kidnapped & tortured is beyond criminal. It's an offense to civilized humanity and largely unforgivable. If measures are not to be taken to 'protect & serve', then we are merely being occupied by an armed force whose mission is other than our protection. Why is it that as Mayor Landrieu & Superintendent Serpas push for a more transparent NOPD, this behavior & direct obstruction of that pact with the citizenry of New Orleans is so obviously in violation? Have we not the right to know that these threats are at our doorsteps? Is there an investigation even under way, or has it been withheld from the general information pool of the New Orleans Police Department altogether? Those of us who live in the Marigny/Bywater area attract thousands of visitors a year, with the Times-picayune calling it New Orleans New Bohemia. Prospect 1.5 brings dozens & dozens of out of state visitors daily. Are they to be subjected to this danger, only to return home with tales of rape & torture? Are they to become victims themselves, along with our locals? Is that really how our city should be depicted, and, in fact, is that how we are to live? I've included a partial list of these events below. Please check for yourself, as to whether these crimes have ever been investigated, and what their current status is. As for myself & my neighbors, we are becoming used to the failure of our local police force, and the future of our neighborhood in the City of New Orleans. That commentary alone, is saddening beyond measure. Sincerely; Lord David Writer & Artist Marigny, New Orleans All of the incidents listed below are believed to have been reported to the NOPD 5th District. Last week (Wed. the 8th?), St. Anthony & Villere Streets; a woman was kidnapped, blindfolded & driven around the city, told she would be killed. She was taken to several ATMs & made to withdraw money. She was eventually dumped, alive, from the car. Monday, 12/13; St Ferdinand & Villere Streets; A couple, new to town, leaving to go out to dinner. The man starts to return for some reason. Couple is kidnapped & taken prisoner in their own home. Woman is repeatedly raped & tortured while man made to watch. Couple forced to use credit cards, call friends to procure money. Cell phones were stolen & continued being used. Cell phones also contained active GPS devices. Neither phone numbers nor GPS were used by 5th District according to those close to victims. They are leaving town immediately. I have been assured this was reported to NOPD 5th District the night it occurred. Saturday, 12/18; St. Claude & Press St.; 16 year old girl abducted, kidnapped & raped. Later released. I have been assured this was reported to NOPD 5th District. Saturday, 12/18; Marigny & Villere Streets; 5 people at local residence, single robber enters through back unlocked door. Robs everyone in the house @ gun point. Leaves with money & cell phones, etc. I have been assured this was reported to NOPD 5th District the night it occurred. *PLEASE NOTE* It has also been brought to my attention that while the NOPD had stepped up patrols in the St. Roch area, directly adjacent to these crimes, a new local 'Citizens Group' crafted a small petition claiming the police were bothering them by patrolling. Some have refused to sign it, as it contained the signatures of many who are known as thugs &/or criminals in the neighborhood involved. This petition was offered up @ a citizens meeting with the 5th District, & much to the disappointment of the regular citizenry, the patrols were canceled immediately. Those opposing the petition were not allowed to see it by Commander Kelly, reports say.