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The Disturbing Continued Pattern of Young Black Male Crime Against White Women Along Lake Merrit

I saw today's Adams Point Yahoo Message Board email to me and this bit of news stuck out like a sore thumb:

I don't have a lot of details, however, here's what I heard from my neighbor (who doesn't have internet)

My neighbor, a young woman, was waiting for a ride from friends at @ midnight on Weds at the corner of Jayne & Lee. A foreign make car (Corolla?) drove up Lee from Vernon, turned onto Jayne and doubleparked. Two young men got out of the car and chased the young woman who tried to hide out in one of the apartment buildings on Lee.

They caught her and took her purse at gunpoint, ran back to their car and drove away.

My neighbor describes the attack as opportunistic--the guys in the car saw her and decided to relieve her of her cash, cards and keys.

The assault and robbery have been reported to the police

The good news: She's not hurt--just scared.

The bad news: she lost her purse
we have armed robbers cruising the neighborhood. Please be careful.

and this:

Can you make sure your friend has a description of the armed robber who hit Pearl/Oakland Ave on May 9?

"The robber was described as a Male Black, 6'1" 180-200 lbs, 30's, round clean shaven face, medium complexion, wearing a tannish /brown jacket, dark hood and jeans"

I can use other examples as well, and I have in the past. I've written it before and I will write it again until it stops. There's a continued, disturbing pattern of crimes committed against White Women by Young Black Men around Lake Merritt. Look, no crime is a "good crime" and I'm as sick of being informed of Black on Black crime as this. But this pattern is unique to this area and it's gone on too long without action or conversation.

The reason for this is that -- my guess -- is the men (sometimes boys) think the women are easy targets. I walk the street of Lake Merritt all the time and nothing has ever happened to me and I think part of the reason is that I'm a Black man. The bottom line is that everyone should feel safe.

Ok, Zennie. What should we do?

Well, I do think having a mounted police presence is necessary. I miss the days when police rode around on horses at night. But the other solution I have is a more complicated one: we all in this neighborhood should know each other. Do you know your neighbor? Why not? Do you recognize people on your block?

Also, I do know White Women who have walked Lake Merritt for years and nothing has happened to them. They hold their heads up -- not down -- and walk. They don't carry themselves like potential victims. Some do carry guns. Others can just knock your block off. And still others just plain don't walk alone. That's why it's good to know people around you because the best protection is being around people you know, regardless of color. And that's a great reason to have a diverse -- racially diverse -- set of friends because I can tell you when I walk with a friend nothing ever happens.

The youngsters who commit these crimes don't live around here. If we know each other it increases the feeling that an outsider is just that and less likely to harm people in a village. But the village has got to feel like one. This -- Lake Merritt--doesn't.

Know you neighbors.

And mounted police could help too.
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