City police have failed Rosemont

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By J. Christian Adams, Alexandria

To the editor:

The Alexandria Police Department doesn’t have a clue in the murder of Ronald Kirby — in more ways than one. Consider the fiasco of a neighborhood meeting at Matthew Maury Elementary School intended to calm fears in Rosemont (“Police Chief: Rosemont ‘as safe as any community,’” November 26).

Police Chief Earl Cook reassured residents there was not a crazed person running around, killing at random. Fine. What about a perfectly sane person walking the neighborhood, killing as needed?
Cook says Rosemont is “as safe as any” other neighborhood, as if that will satisfy anyone.

As a former Rosemont resident (emphasis on former), here are some facts that neither Cook nor his escort of politicians dared mention at the recent meeting:

• For years, Rosemont has suffered from nighttime — and even daytime — car burglaries. Anyone who knows anything about crime knows that small crimes breed large ones. And on this score, Cook’s department has failed. After residents caught and confronted some of the thieves, the thugs more than once responded with violence or brandished a firearm. Yet some Rosemont residents were opposed to crackdowns, arguing these are just kids being kids and blaming the victims for leaving cars unlocked.

• On multiple occasions I answered knocks on my door with a pistol in my pocket. Why? Because the person knocking was quite obviously not a neighbor. Other times the knocker gently tested to see if the doorknob was unlocked before I answered. I came to learn that it was best to keep the door locked, always.

• Police have shown little to no interest in reports of petty crimes that I — and others — experienced in Rosemont. I filed reports about thefts, yet authorities couldn’t be bothered.
If the police are looking for clues, they might scour the many pages of reports filed by residents about petty matters.

They might review the identity of suspicious people that they questioned roaming the neighborhood on foot who clearly didn’t reside there — assuming they even bothered to conduct such interviews and make a record.