Walking on by.

Some things, I don’t get.  Ever.

Police and relatives of a man gunned down on a Homestead street expressed shock and disgust that six people walked past the fallen victim on the sidewalk early Tuesday but didn’t stop or call police. Residents along West Sylvan Street later told police they heard as many as six shots fired just after midnight, but no one called police at the time, said Homestead police Chief Jeffrey DeSimone. At least six people told police they passed Broque Adams’ body on the sidewalk, but didn’t summon authorities because they “didn’t want to get involved,” DeSimone said.

Thoughts:

1. While it would be nice if someone walked over to the body to see if he was alive, to see if he was scared, to see if he needed to see a face of comfort before he died, I get that it might be too much for residents of violent neighborhoods.  But no one asked these people to “get involved.”  Keep walking if you wish, but call 911 and say, “Hey, someone got shot here.”  That’s it.  Three little buttons on your phone.

2.  The reason I can’t understand this might have something to do with the fact that I’ve never lived around violence.  The most violence I ever saw was the time when we were all little and my mother got my father so mad that he threw a peach he was eating at the kitchen wall.  And my mother burst out laughing at him because my father NEVER gets mad.  Ever.  I think it pleased her to see him get a little angry.  Also, we got ants because he never cleaned up the juice on the wallpaper.  Good times, as Tina Fey says.

3.  The other reason I can’t understand this is because I am the type of person to “get involved.”

Last week while sitting on my bus waiting for the bus driver to assist a handicapped passenger I witnessed a young mother and father fighting on the sidewalk.  She got mad at the guy and started walking away from him while pushing the toddler in his stroller. She was yelling at him and he was following her to try to get her to stop, but she wasn’t having any of it.

He finally reached her and Burghers, he grabbed her by the hair.

By. The. Hair.  I was aghast.

He pulled her head back a bit and yelled at her and no one standing around did anything.  That’s when I stood up to get off the bus and I grabbed Saucy in case I needed to call 911.

He walked away from her and went back into the building before I intervened and I don’t know what I would have done when I reached them, probably got my ass kicked good.

The point is that it is in my very nature to do something.   So I can’t understand a human being walking right past a dying human being and not doing ANYTHING.

4.  The moment we stop being affected by violent deaths is the moment we stop being human.





40 Comments

  1. Ex-Burgher in Baltimore
    September 24, 2008 11:03 am

    This thing does really bother me…but (and I will probably get yelled at for saying this) I can understand why no one would call 911. I live in an “up and coming” neighborhood of Baltimore that is still dealing with a lot of violence, drug activity, and prostitution. Last year there was a shooting on my block and my neighbor looked out her window, saw it, and called 911. She was asked to testify at the trial and agreed to do so. Since then she has been threatened almost daily by the idiots in the neighborhood and her house has been vandalized multiple times.

    Another neighbor called 911 but refused to testify because he didn’t want to be identified – the criminals here somehow found out that he also called and have now been threatening him.

    All this happened in an “up and coming” neighborhood that isn’t nearly as bad as some. I can imagine that if a person deals with this on a daily basis they can learn to turn their head and not get involved – including not even calling 911. Sucks but it’s reality when you deal with it constantly.



  2. Kayleigh
    September 24, 2008 11:14 am

    I could see walking by if a person was far enough away that you couldn’t see them clearly. I have seen plenty of people sleep off the night before in an alley, and wouldn’t think twice about it. But a person laying on the sidewalk right in front of you? Even if you are a coldhearted SOB who has no interest in helping someone, wouldn’t you want to not step over a dead person on your way to the bus stop?

    And gunshots? Like in a city and not the middle of a forest during hunting season? Automatic 911. If your choices are “get involved” or “stand by idly” as your neighborhood is torn apart by this kind of violence, you bet I am getting involved.



  3. sad but true
    September 24, 2008 11:17 am

    I work in Homestead, and interact closely with the families in this neighborhood, “Ex-Burgher in Baltimore” is exactly right.



  4. gunnlino
    September 24, 2008 11:49 am

    A sad but true commentary on our culture and society. The time of neighbors and passers-by getting involved have long ago been murdered by the thug culture and the don’t snitch mentality.

    How did this come to pass ? You dare not say, it’s not politically correct to speak the truth.



  5. Jagoff
    September 24, 2008 12:13 pm

    It’s embarrassing that this would happen in Pittsburgh. I hope the six that passed by and didn’t want to get involved get castrated. I don’t understand how someone can let this happen in their own neighborhood. Don’t they have any sense of community? This don’t snitch attitude is what ruins their communities. Maybe I just don’t understand it. I saw a guy stumbling past my house all drunk and/or drugged up and called the police. Perhaps these people have no qualms with having this shit in their neighborhood or maybe they just think that someone else will clean it up for them.
    Anyway, embarrassed and pissed off best describes how I feel about this.



  6. Ex-Burgher in ATL
    September 24, 2008 12:47 pm

    From the PG Article on this (http://www.postgazette.com/pg/08268/914463-55.stm):

    “One relative, who asked not to be identified, said it was the third time someone had fired shots at Mr. Adams. He was not wounded in the other incidents.”

    “Mr. Adams had been arrested four times since 2004, most recently last September on drug trafficking counts.”

    “In 1992, Mr. Adams’ half-brother, Roque Thomas, was 18 when he was killed in Spring Garden. In 2003, his cousin, Israel Cyrus, 16, was stabbed to death by a classmate as they walked home from school in Homewood.”

    So this man has been shot at least 3 times before, has lost family members to violence, but still continue to traffic drugs and apparently didn’t think it was time to change his life style? Is there really anyone out there who couldn’t see this coming? Maybe after the second time he was almost shot, someone should have stepped in and said, “Hey, maybe you should pull yourself together.” I know that working a minimum wage job doesn’t pay nearly as much as drug dealing, but it also doesn’t come with the risk of being shot. Every other day there is a new article “Shooting in Homestead/Homewood/Hill District/etc” Maybe it’s time the people in those neighborhoods stop holding press conferences and vigils and asking the city and county (and Penguins) for money to better their communities and start doing what they can to better things themselves. It’s about time they stop fostering the Hood version of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”



  7. animals
    September 24, 2008 12:56 pm

    4. The moment we stop being affected by violent deaths is the moment we stop being human.

    Sadly it seems as if this is already the case in a part of our society which has devolved into complete thug anarchy. Until this can be broken it is destined to continue. Those will continue to step over. Cry on the funerals on television. Wonder why. Then its your son, daughter, boyfriend, brother, etc.

    Someone knows who these terrorists are. They are someones neighbor. Here’s a thought, call 911 and report it, tell them who did it AND give the name as the snitch as another of their gang. What do they do when they don’t know who is and who isn’t snitchin’ to the police? It is time for people to take back their homes, families and neighborhoods. Otherwise we just continue to wall this off and let the bad guys fight it out until there is none left.



  8. HokieRider
    September 24, 2008 12:58 pm

    Reminds me of this incident: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHXC_nqFb4g

    Old man walking across the street nearly misses getting hit by one vehicle and gets nailed by the one behind it. No one seems to care. Cars pass, pedestrians pass. Its stupid.

    We are all so afraid to “get in the middle of things” that no one does the right thing. My husband says I’m gonna get my ass kicked some day because I say things to people who are being rude and indifferent to others. Whats wrong with us that we can’t at least be civil?



  9. jp
    September 24, 2008 1:02 pm

    Terrible just realy sickening to hear. I know the wheels have come off Homestead a long time ago, but this is really disheartening. Does not sound like someplace special.



  10. Fug's Fungus
    September 24, 2008 1:15 pm

    Going with Ex-Burgher in ATL on this one. There will be howls of outrage from the community, people asking why there aren’t three police cars per block, and probably a few ministers getting together for yet another “End the Violence.” And then nothing will happen until the next shooting, when the cycle happens all over again.

    Fear of reprisals, the “no snitching” code–if you’re not willing to stand up for yourself, who the frickin’ hell do you expect to stand up for you? Here’s an idea: call 911, and then tell all of your neighbors you called 911. Spread the word that you saw Jack Jackson gun down Joe Josephson. Call Jack Jackson’s family and tell them you called 911 and that they should be ashamed of themselves for raising a boy who turned into a murderer. Give the police the names of everyone you’ve told, and make sure the people you’ve told know you’ve given the police their names. That way everyone’s “implicated,” and if someone threatens you, spread the word of that threat and who made it to the exact same people. (Everyone may now start ripping me new ones.)

    BTW, PG, enormous props to you for leaping to action on the bus. If some idiot “father” wants to act like a caveman, then he should be treated like a caveman: toss him naked into the tiger enclosure at the zoo without so much as a sharp stick.



  11. Fug's Fungus
    September 24, 2008 1:16 pm

    Sorry, animals, didn’t mean to repeat your idea; I was too busy typing to hit refresh and see your post.



  12. captain dummy
    September 24, 2008 1:37 pm

    “Maybe it’s time the people in those neighborhoods stop holding press conferences and vigils and asking the city and county (and Penguins) for money to better their communities and start doing what they can to better things themselves. It’s about time they stop fostering the Hood version of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell””

    seriously??? doing something for themselves??? these communities don’t care… they have all the wrong role models… no pride… no fear of jail… and no culture. seriously. and everybode owes them something on top of that…

    don’t believe me??? take a nice little trip through homewood some nice evening… please, make sure you drive through the backstreets too.

    the “receive hand” is outstretched WAY farther then the “give hand” and there is NO such word as “civil”



  13. captain dummy
    September 24, 2008 1:55 pm

    BTW, i wasn’t calling out “Ex-Burgher in ATL” at all… that, so far, was the most realistic comment…



  14. sad but true
    September 24, 2008 2:01 pm

    A lot of people that are commenting on here have no idea about the people that live here. No idea about the family. Maybe someone did say “Hey, maybe you should pull yourself together.”

    There are some positive people working in Homestead to change things. But it is not an easy job.

    and Captain Dummy, this is about HomeSTEAD not HomeWOOD. You probably don’t know a single person living in Homestead (or as you think it is…Homewood), so don’t comment on what they think or feel. Captain Dummy, you live up to your name.



  15. jp
    September 24, 2008 2:23 pm

    This kind of stuff happens all over the place has nothing to do with socio-economic status of the neighborhood. I used to live in Frankfurt Germany and people would keel over dead all the time in the middle of the ritzy main shopping district of the city and people would literally step over them without lending a hand absolutely zero empathy. I also remember numerous occasions where people would be assaulted or worse in subway stations in well-heeled neighborhoods while people just stood by and watched. This kind of thing also happens all the time in downtown Manhattan in the midst of bankers and other professionals too busy to get involved . So check the self-righteousness please



  16. Ex-Burgher in Baltimore
    September 24, 2008 2:34 pm

    I have to agree with sad but true. You really don’t know what it’s like until you deal with it day in and day out. For some people it’s the “stop snitching” attitude and for others it is fear that if they do get involved then they will be harrassed and put themselves in danger (read what I said earlier about my neighbor).

    And usually tend to be people in the neighborhood who do get involved and want to help (my neighborhood is currently fighting the prosititution problem with a blog: http://baltimorejohnwatch.blogspot.com/) but if you have kids or want to just come home and not have to worry at night then you’ll stay out of it.

    You really need to live in an area with serious violence in order to understand it.



  17. captain dummy
    September 24, 2008 2:38 pm

    no, no, no, “sad but true”… sadly, a lot of people commenting on here DO have an idea of the people that live there…

    and i believe my comment was directed at any “hood”… but thank you for noticing (and stating) the HUGE difference between homeSTEAD and homeWOOD (and rankin, and hazelwood, and lincoln-lemington, and wilkinsburg, and arlington, and upper st. claire (ok, i threw that last one in for laughs… as i sit high atop mt. lebanon in my super-posh, fabulous mansion!!! mwah ha ha!))



  18. captain dummy
    September 24, 2008 2:55 pm

    i should say though, all joking aside, i understood there are exceptions in every neighborhood… but i think they are just outnumbered or not taken seriously. that’s pretty sad…



  19. jp
    September 24, 2008 3:00 pm

    Dude, the vast, vast majority of people in Homestead or any neighborhood are normal law abiding people who work every day try to do the best they can to lead productive lives and just do not want to be hassled. The criminal element is small but active minority.



  20. sad but true
    September 24, 2008 3:35 pm

    Well Captain Dummy, we found something we can agree on!



  21. Heart broken
    September 24, 2008 5:31 pm

    “You really need to live in an area with serious violence in order to understand it.”

    I am a 28 year old, white female who owns a home in Wilkinsburg, and while admittedly I do not call the police every time I hear gunshots (which is not nearly as often as I’m sure some people think it is) I would NEVER, NEVER, EVER walk past someone lying shot in the street and not at least pull my cell phone out of my purse and call 911. If I did, I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night.

    For those of you who have turned this post into an excuse to rage against black people/neighborhoods:
    It’s so easy for white people to talk about how black folks need to better themselves and their communities. Try actually being black for a day. Let me know how it works out for you. Hell, maybe you could just get to know some black people. Perhaps you wouldn’t be quite so quick to judge. And this isn’t about snitching, it’s not about being black or white or blue or purple, it’s not about living in Homewood or Fox Chapel or East Bumfuck…it’s about having some compassion for your fellow human beings.

    And to Captain Dummy – You honestly think these communities don’t care that their young people are wrapped up in something that can (and does) get them killed on a regular basis and causes violence on their streets? You are fooling yourself if you do.



  22. Hoosierburgher
    September 24, 2008 9:58 pm

    I find it interesting that nobody has thought of the fact that maybe someone really wanted this guy dead. Now, please don’t mistake me here, I think it’s a horriable situation, but if someone has shot at this guy so much, there must be something going on. Also, what if someone was watching? What if the person that shot him was watching to see if someone were to help him out, then they end up dead beside him? As much as I would love to say that I would definitely diall 911, I honestly couldn’t say for certian that I would. I really hope that I never have to find out…



  23. Kayleigh
    September 24, 2008 10:12 pm

    I want to add, because I didn’t mention it in my first post (to avoid writing an entire essay) that I have lived in VERY violent areas. I spent a couple years as a single white female living in the middle of Memphis, TN. It is one of the most violent cities in the country, with more “violent crime” per capita than almost any other city. It is smaller than the most violent cities, but the rate of crime per person is disgusting.

    A good friend of mine was murdered by her abusive husband the day her divorce was going through, and not one of the neighbors would stand up and say ANYTHING. A young mother who was trying to get out of a relationship with an abusive man for the sake of her son was killed, and no one did a damn thing. And he got to walk free because no one would say anything. After he murdered my friend.

    So I am not speaking from suburban pedestal here, with no knowledge of how things “really work”. People still need to speak up.



  24. animals
    September 24, 2008 11:53 pm

    Ms Heartbroken,

    Congrats to you for living on the edge of civilization. At least you still have compassion, civility and the humanity left to intervene if you saw something like this take place. No one is saying they should follow the guys or try and tackle them but 911 isn’t that hard and this kid laid there for how long??

    From reading this blog for awhile, I expect theres not a lot of gang bangers on the net and reading PG. However there is a good cross section of the ‘burgh here not just the burbs and Shadyside etc being represented. I also don’t recall anyone raging on a particular neighborhood or race. The issue here is the breakdown of society and how a murder in public can be accepted and the victim walked by as if he were a bus smashed pigeon (PG friendly content). Here is a hint for you. There are whites, blacks, asian and hispanic gangs too and if the same thing happened in any of their neighborhoods (yes not many of the later two in Pittsburgh) I expect we’d still be as outraged.

    Its not about having compassion for fellow human beings. I think we all have that here. Its about how those who have LOST that ability and can murder a rival or innocent who got in the way and not care. Its about a culture of fear that keeps the “good people” afraid to intervene. Its about cracked out parents who don’t know why their teenager is out all hours of the night. The pre-teen is not in school. Tend to not care or ignore that he / she is just selling a little weed on the side. Or hanging around with the wrong crowd. Or has a 9mm tucked in his pants.

    Until this civility returns we will continue to have this debate and you will keep hearing shots. And seeing the news reports about another young person (maybe going no where, maybe going somewhere as the young man who was killed in the northside not long ago) dead in the streets. Going to school. Getting a job. The Pittsburgh promise. Thats not cool. Easy money. Gangs. Badly placed loyalty. Drugs. These kids don’t expect to live much past 20 anyway. That has to change.



  25. captain dummy
    September 25, 2008 6:56 am

    …apparently there’s a lot of young, single white females living in the hood these days! if anybody needs me this weekend, i’ll be hanging out at jack’s in hazelwood rather than jack’s in the southside!!!

    p.s.
    we may debate and have differences, naturally, but nobody made this a race issue, “Heart broken”…



  26. clubsodalowdown
    September 25, 2008 8:09 am

    I know this boys sister, and some of the very people he hangs with. I grew up with them and as someone said maybe someone wanted him dead. That is indeed a fact. The six people that walked past him may have been the very ones around when he got shot. I’ve seen it before someone gets shot and everyone is just hanging around. Is it right NO, but if they are the very people that wanted him dead why would they call the police.

    I feel for his family, because I know the pain. It’s said I used to love being from Homestead and now it’s a place I’d rather not step foot in. In my 20 something years I’ve had many of my friends shot and killed. I’ve seen people plotting on people everyday, some people just don’t care. One boy got shot at almost every week and all he ever did was sit on his moms porch. It’s really sad these things keep happening. Until people want to change things they are not going to change. I know a lot of the younger boys in Homestead take so much pride in being “gangsta” and making a name for themselves. The very people they look up to are doing the same things. They think going to jail is a milestone in life. Having a gun makes you bad, selling drugs is the only thing to do and protecting your hood is your only goal in life.

    Yes there are a lot of good people in Homestead but sometimes it’s hard to see past all the bad ones cause they’re chilling on every corner. A lot of the kids there also have base head mothers which doesn’t help. Others mother, don’t care if they’re babies sell drugs as long as they get some of the money. When you live in families like that what kinds of things do you expect to happen?

    Sorry I didn’t put this together better but I just type as my brain thinks. LOL



  27. Heart Broken
    September 25, 2008 9:16 am

    The words “thug(s)” and “hoods,” which were used several times in the above comments, are not generally terms applied to white people or “their” neighborhoods.



  28. talk what you know
    September 25, 2008 9:42 am

    Well, first off i would like to say some of you know what you are talking about while others have no idea at all. Until you live that life don’t comment. This man was a family member of mine so I am taking offense to some of these comments. You can not always trust everything the news prints. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but like i said talk what you know. Everyne knows that the media tends to hype things up. It is not about whether he was shot at 3 times or what he did with his life the man was gunned down. He has a niece coming into the world that he will never be able to meet. He has family that will miss him. Who gives anyone the right to take anyone elses life. Instead of trying to tear down someone just offer some condolences. This man may have been in the wrong place at the wrong time repeatedly. That is the neighborhod where he was raised he knew so many people. All i am saying is my cousin will be missed and show some respect. You were not there so you don’t know. People do change and some don’t.



  29. white guy
    September 25, 2008 10:02 am

    Ah Heart Broken, maybe that’s why your heart is broken, you deny things you do not know. Thug(s) and Gangsta and Hood are very much used in “white people” in “their” neighborhoods and schools.
    Take this challenge, go to a “white” school when school breaks for the day, walk through the crowds of kids and pay close attention to their language, you’re a girl you can do this w/o someone calling the cops.

    You will find that the language is only just a little different than in a “black” school.



  30. Heart Broken
    September 25, 2008 1:31 pm

    I very much doubt anyone using those terms on this blog is a high school student.

    I don’t think I’m the one in denial here.



  31. truth hurts
    September 25, 2008 3:45 pm

    Heartbroken —

    “It’s so easy for white people to talk about how black folks need to better themselves and their communities. Try actually being black for a day. Let me know how it works out for you. Hell, maybe you could just get to know some black people. Perhaps you wouldn’t be quite so quick to judge.”

    And you know so much about being black? I work in a school where I am 1 of 4 white people and it is 99% black, so I know quite a few black people (colleagues and students) and I also know what it is like to feel like a minority in a situation. I see a lot of students who see violence and drugs, etc. everyday, and whose parents are not around much or at all and they CHOOSE not to get involved in it by joining sports teams, getting good grades, trying in class. On the other hand, I see a lot of students who see that and choose to go down that path. They come from the same general area. To everyone who says that there is not a choice and that it is not easy to change from that lifestyle or get out – I have seen it done. Several times. No these neighborhoods are not all bad, but the media doesn’t report on the good guys. This man had a choice, and he put himself in a situation where he was killed. Him and his family have no one to blame but him.



  32. Miss Lee
    September 25, 2008 4:13 pm

    Whether they wanted to see the man dead or simply chose not to get involved, PG’s point remains the same- the person who so callously disregards someone else’s life has lost their own humanity. It does not matter which neighborhood you live in and if there are risks in speaking up – when did doing the right thing become dependent upon it being easy?

    And to Heart Broken – I’ve called my younger sister’s no-good, WHITE ex-boyfriends ‘thugs’ loads of times. If the term has any racial connotation, it’s certainly not about blacks – the word derives from Hindu! No one mentioned race before you did, so please check your own bigotry at the door before you accuse the rest of us.



  33. gumbygirl
    September 25, 2008 5:25 pm

    Jesus! Why couldn’t someone at the very least call 911, say there’s someone hurt on the street-then hang up? That’s not getting involved, it’s just a damn phone call. My dad grew up in Homestead, his dad was chief of staff at Homestead hospital for many years. I lived there until I was 5 or 6, but we moved to Ligonier to get away from the terrible pollution (this was the 60’s, the mills were still going full blast.)I have fond memories of going to the Leona theater to watch matinees on Saturdays. It’s a damn shame that a historic neighborhood like that has been allowed to deteriorate so badly, but I guess the money just isn’t there to do much about it.



  34. Pissed off Family Memeber
    September 26, 2008 12:37 am

    This message is for comment #6 that is exactly why you live in ATL now…. My brother was getting his life together and going to school. So that is where your comment is stupid….(watch the news vie the web) Regardless, of what he did in the past he is still a young man and to be left on the street like trash is BS

    Secondly, my brother Roque was killed as well as his cousin. And how did we see this coming if he is only 22 yrs. old, he still had many years to live. Plus those all of his crimes were all done when he was still a teen…(get your fact right). As an adult he was working….

    Plus being shot at due to rival neighborhood bull crap is his fault???? Third, C. Batch is from Homestead-and very active in the neighborhood an NFL player and still can’t help stop the fighting…… The police (please) can’t stop it so how can you the outsider help??????

    Last, Broque was living outside of Homestead for months. But I guess with your thinking he had it coming…..

    I hope that you never lose anyone close to you in a violent manner…… I think your tune will change…..If not go blow yourself…….

    To all other comments thank you and keep us in your prays….



  35. Pissed off Family Memeber
    September 26, 2008 12:56 am

    I got one more comment Broque has 11 nieces and nephews….. Including the one that has yet to be born….. 5 of which are male so watch what you say….. And it is very hard to raise a male in this world…. even harder when he is black.



  36. Ex-Burgher in ATL
    September 26, 2008 10:18 am

    1. EVERY time someone in a bad neighborhood is shot in Pittsburgh their family says they were turning their life around. If this was really true, they wouldn’t keep getting shot.

    2. You should have seen this coming even if he was 22 because of the life he was leading. He was shot at THREE TIMES BEFORE. Wake up/Grow Up. His last arrest for drug trafficing was a year ago. He was 21, not a teen. So much for making a change.

    3. You play with fire, you get burned. I don’t think anyone would have shot at him three times for absolutely no reason at all.

    4. I never said he had it coming, I said that it was predictable. There is a difference. No he should not have been left on the street to die. People walking past him and leaving him there was wrong and heartless. But to continue to harbor these actions and refuse to help police and not help stop this is not right either and will only lead to more similar situations.

    5. I have lost people close to me due to violence, I graduated from Virginia Tech last May. Your end to that statement shows your maturity, respect, class, etc.



  37. jason
    September 26, 2008 11:07 am

    maybe the passersby thought he was drunk.

    i chuckle whenever i hear a white suburbanite say “i would DO something!!!”. im just repeating what others have said here– try living in a place like that. see if it doesnt erode your humanity and make you sick of people, and make you care less about others. they aint sippin’ merlot in the evening.

    but any human being lying, dying on the ground, is very disturbing.

    i hate to say it, but i would always be reluctant to get involved. the reason is for fear of reprisal against my parents or siblings.



  38. Jared McLaughlin
    September 27, 2008 9:33 pm

    Thanks, PG for the wonderful blog.

    I’ve seen a bit of this sort of thing from a few different perspectives. No one I’m related to has ever faced this sort of problem, but I’ve briefly known at least one person who has died in this manner.

    I’ve also lived in a couple places with the non-reporting problem.

    I’ve also been on the other side of a very similar problem wishing I could construct the means and environment that would enable people to rid their neighborhoods of violent individuals.

    It’s my experience that people know who the violent actors are, and why they are doing so. The problem, it seems, as other have mentioned, is the possibility of retribution. Sometimes, those in the know also have a personal relationship with the actor. It’s a tricky situation, but I sincerely believe that increased reporting of information related to violent crime is the only real solution to the problem. Without information, the police are nearly helpless. They cannot be in all places at all times.

    There was a time when the US didn’t have police officers, nor public prosecutors. Justice seems to have been served. It’s a clue to the idea that the people can police themselves quite effectively. I think we ought to view it as a duty of government to harbor the conditions that will make that possible. Our money might well be spent in ensuring the safety of our informants.

    One method that I saw being used effectively, is to have the informants appear to be arrested. The informant can cook up a believable story for their arrest and release, and since they aren’t truly being arrested, it can be done at their convenience. This seems to give the impression that they aren’t on the side of the law. This is just one technique, but it goes to what I see as the responsibility of the local government to change an us against them mentality into a partnership.



  39. Pissed off Family Memeber
    September 28, 2008 1:30 pm

    First and for most my class has nothing to do with how I feel about my family (1.). (2.) I was there when Broque was going through this and the neighborhood in which we are talk is the problem. Our family has done what we can to change the environment in which he lived. But in his case it came to late….. This always happen to those who try to change….. I’m not saying that selling drugs is good nor did we approve…. That is why things changed in his life….. And all of his charges for drugs were before the age of 21…… It is not my fault nor his that they did not go to court until last year…..

    I just have a BIG PROBLEM with people who are truly outsider’s putting there twist on things. When you really don’t know what you are talking about, plus he was shot at 3 times it started when he was 16. Consider to what most young guys as another day in the hood. Than the rival Hood issue’s started a year ago…. So I guess we should have kept him in the house and not let him out…

    This is coming from someone who remembers the early 90’s of the Burgh. When gangs were popular here, it was hard for the youth then and what alot of you don’t know is the gang crap has returned. I as mother and a woman don’t want to see anymore blood shedd like that again. Cause no one is safe……..



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