My Turn: Downtown Wilmington isn't as dangerous as perceived - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

My Turn: Downtown Wilmington isn't as dangerous as perceived

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I received a fairly "pointed" email in response to the segment I did last week on Facebook's foolish experiment aimed at charging people for sending messages.

The viewer wrote:  "You Sir, are a compete imbecile. Aren't there more important things you could be focused on vs. Facebook? How about crime in downtown Wilmington just for starters?"

Well, yes, there are plenty of things more important than what I talk about on almost any given day.  But because of this suggestion, I'll give you my thoughts on crime in downtown Wilmington.

This city experienced a terrible tragedy downtown with the recent inexplicable murder of a teenager. But other than that, I think it's unfair to characterize downtown Wilmington as a hot bed for crime.

Sure, there is a large number of people congregated around late at night on most weekends.  And that increases the potential for more crime.

But the recent statistics don't support the apparent big problem this viewer perceives.  According to the city, 2012 saw the fewest serious and violent crimes downtown in a decade.  And overall crime dropped 36% in that same period.

The fact is the City of Wilmington has made downtown a focus and the statistics show they have made good progress at making it safer.  I just hope the person that wrote that email can find it in their heart to show a little appreciation for that progress.   

That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at yourturn@wect.com.


 

Emailed comments from viewers:

Bravo!!! Are there more important topics to talk about at any one time? Yes, but all work and no play makes one a very dull commentary!! Keep up the good work! Personally, I think they need more traffic cops out and about. I see traffic violations, including speeding and running red lights constantly! I hear about more accidents than I do of downtown crime. 

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I dare you to walk around downtown's north side at night by yourself. 15 minutes at 3 locations at 3 different times, like 9pm, midnight, and 3am.

Then report back just how safe you feel. I can make up a nice map for you to take your different routes.

Forget the stupid clubs downtown. Focus on the areas where drugs and prostitution are accepted as a way of life. There is a ton of unreported crime on those streets. A blind man can see that.

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The way that WPD manipulates the statistics is laughable. I recently read that they had now broken out a new category to water down % numbers by creating a "Central Business Zone" crime rate.

To 90% of all area residents downtown is creepy and unsafe after dark. Like one of the posters presented take your wife on random nights to dinner and be done at 9-9:15 pm and you will wisk her to the car and get out. I grew up in NYC and know the drill, this downtown is rife with freaks, stew bums, druggies, prostitutes and miscreant creatures who prowl the streets at night. Never mind the drunks, tough guy Marines, seedy tattoo shops and urine laden alleys.

Please don't spout out with fictitious numbers that are disingenuos. We all consider the downtown to be 17th st to the river. Hell, your own station broadcasts a stabbing, shooting, drug bust, etc, etc, everyday.

It's a shame because downtown could be awesome if we didn't have such spineless leaders.

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Well I guess perception is in the eye of the beholder. On Tuesday of this week I sat in my living room while no less than 15 police cars raced down Princess Place Dr. Sirens blasting and lights flashing. Seems there was a standoff with an armed criminal just a few blocks up the road that lasted most of the day. Wilmington PD are all over it, how about you guys paying attention and putting some focus on it?

Downtown is a hotbed of criminal activity deserving of news coverage.

Wake up fool.

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