- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 23, 2001

This is how community policing is supposed to work.
When the stickup robberies increased in Police Service Area (PSA) 106 near Union Station earlier this year, residents gave Metropolitan Police Lt. Bob Glover an earful.
The officer — who hands out his home phone number to anyone who wants it — called in more patrol cars and undercover officers, resulting in the arrests of groups of teen-agers who were mugging people in broad daylight.
Meanwhile, the homeowners have used an e-mail network to pass on suspect descriptions, alerts and crime reports. The community liaison to the police has a Web site full of links to crime statistics and government leaders. And the Orange Hat Patrol is one of the most well-organized in the city.
Its enough to make even the victims of crime feel a bit safer.
"Theyve really taken care of F Street [NE]. I think its gotten better," said resident Jennifer Skapley, 30, whose home was burglarized recently.
Ronni Glaser, 27, who was eight months pregnant when she was mugged and knocked to the ground on F Street four months ago, feels confident enough to return to the scene of the crime.
Of course, the area still can be a dangerous place. Teens are mostly to blame, residents say, for purse snatchings and brazen, afternoon knock-downs, perhaps the most pervasive crime in the area.
"I think its ignorance because I think its juveniles," said Keith Jarrell, a community liaison to the police in that area, explaining the daytime crimes.
In March, residents reported 18 robberies in the PSA area. While the number dropped to nine in April, police have warned that the humid summer months could bring the figure back up.
Mr. Jarrell, who runs a Web site called www.keithndc.com, thinks students from nearby schools who find themselves in need of cash on the way to Union Station are the ones pushing residents down and taking their money.
Or it could be that robbers from Maryland are taking the Metro to Union Station, committing a quick robbery, then hopping quickly back on the Metro, Mr. Jarrell said.
Keeping the crooks in check is the job of Lt. Glover, 29, who oversees 21 officers in the PSA. Though a resident of Virginia, the lieutenant seems to spend most of his time in Northeast.
Just this past weekend — his days off — Lt. Glover helped clean garbage in the neighborhood and attended a vigil.
He credits a crime analysis conducted by 1st District Commander Kim Dine for pinpointing where and when robbers strike in the community. Officers were then assigned to those areas to work traffic assignments.
"The increased uniform presence gives the community a sense of security," he said.
Even when hes not in his PSA, Lt. Glover is helping residents.
The e-mail system, called Netlink, allows messages written by one member to reach everyone on the network, including Lt. Glover. D.C. Council member Sharon Ambrose, Ward 6 Democrat, sends bulletins through the system.
In one recent message, a neighbor describes a house on 10th Street where "there is public drinking, underage drinking, loud noise and music at all hours of the day and night."
A rapprochement has been reached between officers and homeowners in this part of the city, but thats not to say that residents are completely satisfied.
On Sunday, members of PSA 106 held a candlelight vigil for F Street resident Susan Svengross, whose 2-year-old murder case was botched when evidence was left in a storage closet for nearly six months before being turned over to the FBI.


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