D.C. Police Chief Robert Contee believes that random gun violence becomes a bigger problem when posh restaurants are shot up. He criticized the crime rate without taking any responsibility to curb it through data-driven police efforts to curtail gang and drug-related attacks. D.C. has been known for its dangerous streets for years. Contee said that even poor neighborhoods where crime goes unsolved and unpunished should be addressed. But he took the opportunity of a recent wave of crime to lash out at the city.
Two men were shot last week in Washington D.C. and taken to the hospital for care. They were eating their meal outdoors when
Contee noted with great angst and dismay, “What happened out here last night was unacceptable. It’s unacceptable in any community. The reality is, we have situations that happen like this all across our city, and it’s been happening for a long time. Last year, we had over 922 people shot in our city. Last year, 198 people were murdered in our city. This should be shocking to the conscience of every person in our city. I don’t care where you live.”
On a recent Saturday night, Nationals three people were hit by gunshots outside of the ballpark. It prompted the game to be interrupted, and a melee followed when fans scrambled for cover.
Contee admits that the current law enforcement cycle does not work. “We have a vicious cycle of bad actors who do things with no accountability, and they end up back in the community, and I guarantee you, when we lock up whoever did this, they will be no stranger to us. I promise you that.” This sounds like he acknowledges that criminals break the law, and gang bangers and want-to-be drug lords will not follow restrictions on guns.
With some of the country’s strictest gun laws, it is “surprising” that people are getting shot in our nation’s capital. Maybe the national guard needs to be called in by Nancy Pelosi. According to D.C.’s web page, “The law requires that no person shall store or keep any loaded firearm on any premises under his control.” That sounds like the people who commit these assaults on the street in broad daylight don’t care about this law.
Contee went on, “the way that we’re going and the things that we’re trying to do, and we want to help people, yes we should. But you cannot satisfy violent criminals, and you cannot. You cannot treat violent criminals out here making communities unsafe for you, for your loved ones, for me, for my loved ones. They might not want a job, and they might not. They might not need services. They may require being off of our streets because they’re making it unsafe for us. And if that’s what it requires, then that’s what it requires. And we have to own that. We have to own it because if not, we see more of this. We see more of this in our communities, and then what happens? When someone is shot, people are outraged by it. I’m outraged every time. Those 922, a lot of those 198 died. I stood over many of them.”
Recommending prosecuting and imprisoning violent offenders is presented as a novel idea for D.C. Contee went on, “have honest conversations with the people, the leadership, be it the police chief, be it, council members, be it courts, be it whoever. The police department, we’re an easy target. You could easily focus on the police department, about what the police department did and didn’t do. That’s easy. I’m challenging you to look at the entire system.
He seems to search for distinctions on how gun laws are written and enforced, “The laws that are in place for people who carry guns in our community, who do things to people in the community, violent acts are those things acceptable. Whatever you say is acceptable. It’s my responsibility to enforce that. That’s my job to respond to those things that the community says are the standard. If some people knew what the standard is, what the outcome is on the other end of some of these cases, it would blow your mind.”
But the problem is to find with the criminals themselves, “The recidivism rate for violent offenders is the highest that we’ve seen anywhere 87 percent, I think, in that area, for people who carry guns. They use them. I’m mad as hell about this, and I hope y’all are too. Look at the system. How are we holding people accountable? What does that accountability look like, and is it okay with you?”
Massive increases in crime have occurred in America’s main cities, particularly during the epidemic, lockdowns, and riots following the homicide of George Floyd. These cities have a single political party in charge of everything from city hall to municipal agencies. The Democratic Party governs the country’s most dangerous cities.