The need to deal harshly with crime on transit
It was "nice" to see the Post (the editorial "How to stop the stone-throwing in Anacostia") and Mayor Gray ("Gray: Metro hasn't justified bus service cuts," Post) conforming to the "news judgement" I expressed last week ("Cut and run: transit and crime edition") about not changing Metrobus frequency in response to rocking incidents in Southeast DC, but in dealing "all hands on deck" style, with the perpetrators. Although there is no question that DC's police department hasn't stepped up to assist the WMATA Transit Police (e.g., "Bus riders worry about safety after recent attacks" from the Post, 2011).
Yesterday's and today's papers ("Stabbing at Woodley Park Metro leaves man dead" and "Suspects in killing at Metro station are due in court," Post) also report on a tragedy, the stabbing death of an 18-year-old at the Woodley Park Metro Station. Allegedly the victim had been robbed by a group of youths earlier in Adams-Morgan--which indicates that police presence in Adams-Morgan needs to be further stepped up but that's another issue--and somehow, the victims and the perpetrators reconnected at the subway station, ending up in the murder.
Somehow, a group of 9 youths was apprehended. Allegedly they were involved in the stabbing. Today's paper reports that one of the youths may be tried as an adult. Only one?
And these, obviously, are not the first serious incidents on the subway system, although murder is rare although people have been seriously beaten (see "Teenager arrested in stabbing incident," from 2012 and "Metro may restrict student riders" and "Fights, teens among challenges as D.C.'s Gallery Place matures" from 2011).
I THINK EVERY ONE OF THE YOUTHS INVOLVED IN THIS CRIME SHOULD BE TRIED AS AN ADULT.
Just as one of the signs of decline of NYC in the 1980s was the rise of crime on the subway system, including turnstile jumping, which by the way, is an issue with youths on the DC subway system and shouldn't be tolerated despite the youth will be youth attitude of many ("Teens on Metro do grow up. I was one of them" by Clinton Yates in the Post), crimes on the transit system here shouldn't be allowed to escalate, as they will only get worse if not interdicted.
See the Yale School of Management case study "William Bratton and the NYPD: Crime Control through Middle Management Reform" and "What Can Police Do to Reduce Crime, Disorder, and Fear?, Weisburd and Eck, Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 593, May 2004.
- "Rail Transit and Neighborhood Crime: The Case of Atlanta, Georgia," Keith R. Ihlanfeldt, Southern Economic Journal, Vol. 70, No. 2 (Oct., 2003), pp. 273-294
- "PROTECTING AGAINST TRANSIT CRIME: THE IMPORTANCE OF THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT," Liggett, Loukaitou-Sideris, and Iseki, UCLA
- TCRP Report 15, Guidelines for the Effective Use of Uniformed Transit Police and Security Personnel Final Report
- TCRP Synthesis 93, Practices to Protect Bus Operators from Passenger Assault
- TCRP Synthesis 21, Improving Transit Security: A Synthesis of Transit Practice
- TCRP Synthesis 80, Transit Security Update