Interim DC police chief meets with residents to discuss growing crime concerns in Southeast DC

- Just days after a 16-year-old D.C. girl was shot and killed in a Capitol Hill neighborhood on the day after Thanksgiving, her death was one of the topics that came up during a crime meeting held in Southeast D.C. Monday night.

Residents expressed their frustration with the violence in their neighborhood as local ANC commissioners called this community meeting to talk with Interim D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham on what needs to be done to quell the violence.

This meeting had been scheduled before Friday's shooting of 16-year-old Breyona McMillian, who was gunned down on I Street outside of the Potomac Gardens housing complex. Police are still looking for her killer and her family and friends do not believe she was the intended target. McMillian’s life was cut short in an area that has seen numerous violent crimes in recent months.

A little over a week ago, multiple shots were fired in the 1500 block of A Street, SE. Newly-released surveillance video shows a suspect driving away from the scene in a gray Volkswagen sedan. That person later shot another man and got away in the same car.

Residents have made numerous calls to police about robberies, burglaries and other violent crimes in Southeast. At Monday night’s meeting, a frustrated resident brought up the subject of placing additional crime cameras in the neighborhood.

“All the cameras in the world are not going to stop what happened over there in the 1200 block of I Street the other day,” said Newsham. “That was a violent offender who felt like they could shoot a gun off in our community. As a result, we have a 16-year-old who is dead. We have multiple cameras over in that area.”

The resident responded to Newsham by saying, “No, we don't.” He also told the interim chief that he has made numerous requests for circular cameras at parks and hot spots they identified last year.

Residents are also asking for more police in the neighborhood to patrol the streets and have voiced concerns about kids loitering in areas that have been hot spots for crime.

D.C. police say they are doing everything they can and are continuing to investigate the recent crimes in Southeast.

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