Mugging ’round Mt Vernon Sq

This morning I got this email from a guy:

Last night I was mugged at the corner of 10th and M–literally within sight of my apartment at Mt. Vernon Plaza across the street. A young male jumped me, grabbed me by the throat and tried to choke me, pushed something hard into my stomach, and demanded my cash. Out of shock (or stupidity), I said no, kicked him in the shin and jumped into the street. In the process, the guy tried to steal my ipod but got away only with my new (and fab-o) earbuds.

I was making all the wrong moves before it happened–listing to loud music on my ipod, not paying attention, and doing my little ipod walk/dance thing. Keep your eyes open ladies and gentlemen. And why would it be so difficult for this city to light its streets? The corner of 10th and M is a busy street yet it’s pitch dark there after the sun goes down.

One thing, though, that the city did do right was the police response. After dialing 911, it took the police about 45 seconds to arrive. Two squad cars scoured the alleys and streets to no avail. A fantastic female cop and her partner even drove me around looking for the jerk that jumped me.

I’ve lived in the city now for more than ten years and have been a part of this neighborhood for six of them. Word from the (now) streetwise, your blog readers should their eyes peeled and their legs taking you down lit streets after dark.

Even when it is not dark be aware of your surroundings. M Street has been having some problems with choking/muggings as been reported on the Mt. Vernon Sq listserv. In broad daylight I’ve been hyper-aware of my surroundings when walking down M lately, accounting for every single person on the street. But this has been east of 7th.

12 thoughts on “Mugging ’round Mt Vernon Sq”

  1. I live at 10th and M and am sorry to hear about your friend getting mugged. I witnessed a purse snatching at the same spot about a week ago. I helped the girl it happened to scour the neighborhood but the guy was long gone. Excellent police response then too…they were there in under a minute.

    I think this is happening now because the gentrification has really reached 10th St…I’ve seen my building transition from working class hispanics to middle-upper class yuppies in the time I’ve lived there. I suppose the criminal element in Shaw figures they are easy pickings.

    I take night classes and arrive home pretty late and could easily see this happening to me. I’m not going to be easy pickings though…I’d love to see the look on the guys face that goes for my wallet and gets his gut slashed open instead.

  2. Chris, I believe you have every right to defend yourself, but don’t do anything stupid that would escalate matters. Sometimes it is not just one guy doing the robbery, but a group.
    But I have heard tale of guys fighting back when it is one on one. One friend is so proud that though he got clocked he didn’t go down, and the robber was interupted by someone else. Recently on the listserv someone relayed the story of a wrestler getting mugged and well the wrestler doing what wrestlers do.

  3. District Liquor Store near 11th and M has been a crime magnent for 20 years but for the last 10 years, it’s really been bad. There’s a coin operated laundry on the corner of 11th and M that’s also a hot spot. in this particular instance i can say that the trouble does not come from The Plymouth. everyone is behaving at The Plymouth these days. That area is PSA 307 and Lt. Michael Smith is in charge. he’s always on the cast.

  4. Thanks for the info RR. I know our “adopt-a-block” cop is Officer Negron, who I do see driving around from time to time. Again, the police presence is pretty good. I think you’re right about those hot spots though.

  5. Yet another detailed story about an assault with absolutely no details regarding the physical appearance of the criminal. This is the norm. Why?

  6. Well the main thrust of the story is to promote ‘not rockin out on your ipod back from the metro @ night’ safety. I’m sure the police were given a decent description, and besides some descriptions can be too general to be useful to the rest of us.

  7. ” and besides some descriptions can be too general to be useful to the rest of us.”

    This assumes that our eyes cannot discern details based upon the very same information provided to the police. Most of us ‘civilians’ seem to have better eyesight and a greater sense of detail than the police (and there are more of us civilians than police). So it makes no sense to NOT provide details to the community about dangerous people.

  8. Huh…wish I had read this before Tuesday night. I was strolling down 10th between M and N Tuesday night at 9:30 pm. I was blabbing away on my cell phone when one guy grabbed me and his two buddies punched me and I dropped to the ground like whoa. They got my cell phone and about $20, and then just kicked me for a few seconds before strolling (in no hurry whatsoever) into the nearest alley. I was way too shocked to want to find a phone and hang out there waiting for the cops, especially since I live on 4th. Anyway, I was really lucky to have not have been lit up worse.

  9. Venu – Are you okay? This is Ryan (the guy who e-mailed regarding my mugging last week). I hope you’re okay–sounds absolutely terrible.

    In answer to the other posters requesting a description, not quite sure what good this would do, but I’m incredibly curious, Venu, if this matches the description of the creep that attacked you: african-american male, thin and lanky, probably 5’11, around 23 or so years old, light facial hair, wearing a grey/green track jacket with a hoodie. Pronounced cheek-bones. The same exact thing happened that when I kicked him and got away, he just kinda hung out and took his time walking away. I was dialing 911 and walking towards him and he just kinda sauntered off.

    Really hope you’re okay, Venu. With how horrible it seems this corner has gotten I hope you’ll walk down a better-lit street (11th would be better and then walk down M to cross the convention center) or take a cab. Hugz.

  10. Hey Ryan: Yeah, I’m fine. I appreciate the concern. I had no idea how bad that block has gotten. I’ve rode my bike up 11th a lot on my way to Columbia Heights, and you make a good point about the better lighting. In my ignorance, I thought it would be safe on 10th, esp. with all the new development.

    The description you gave appears to match with the dude that instigated with me. I really can’t vouch for the pronounced cheekbones or facial hair, though. I was on the ground before I got a good look at the guy, and I wasn’t thinking about making an ID.

    Thanks for the concern. I will be using a lot more taxis now, zoned or metered. Peace.

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