We have heard from police time and again about being extra eyes and ears for them. We're told to speak up if we see a problem. They want to hear from us.
Now, I understand our officers won't be able to prevent all crime and things do happen. But a recent incident in Wilmington would seem to indicate our officers could have done better.
On Mother's Day, there was an event at Robert Strange Park. And someone ended up getting shot.
Our reporters in the newsroom discovered there were some calls for police assistance at the park hours before. The first time, an officer stayed for about 15 minutes and didn't note gang activity. After a second call, an officer stopped by for only about a minute according to the police log. An hour later, someone was shot.
Could they have stuck around? Was something preventing them from staying in the area? Were they too quick to dismiss this as a clear scene?
I think this would be a good case for the police to review. If they don't learn from incidents like this, then they won't make much progress in getting the public's help in the future.
That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emailed comments from viewers:
I am visiting your city for a work conference. On Tuesday, I was watching your station. One minute you are showing a Wilmington cop wrangling a poisonous snake and the next you are critical of officers because a gang member shot another gang member. I certainly hate anyone getting hurt, and I'm sure your officers do as well. Fortunately, they are not the ones who had to shoot a suspect, or I suspect they would have even less support.
I would hate to live in a city where the media is that critical of their police force. Your guys are going to rough neighborhoods, dealing with gangs, catching snakes, etc..It is easy to sit on the sidelines and question those who do. If you are going to be critical at least look into the matter more to be informed. If you were informed, you certainly did not present factors that would show your point. I'm curious about their call volume that night, the details of the information that was giving to them by the callers, and how was their staffing. Do they have a gang unit, and what is the PD doing as a whole about gang activity.
I suspect Wilmington PD would let you ride with them and then you could report with more information about what it is like out there dealing with gangs.
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