A neighborhood group is planning a vigil tonight for a Democratic National Committee staffer who was shot to death near his home.
D.C. police say Seth Conrad Rich, 27, was fatally shot around 4 a.m. Sunday on the 2100 block of Flagler Place NW. Now, the Bloomingdale Civic Association is organizing a memorial for him around the corner, set to begin at 7 p.m. on the 2100 block of First Street NW, per an email to the community. Members from the neighboring LeDroit Park Civic Association will also be joining.
Authorities are still investigating the homicide and haven’t announced any arrests. But at a press conference on Tuesday, Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier said D.C.’s Robbery Task Force, launched in December, had picked up on some robberies in the immediate area over the last month. She described Bloomingdale as “a very safe neighborhood,” where it’s “not uncommon to see people walking around” in the middle of the night with their dogs, or on their way home from going out.
Still, “we do not know if this homicide was in any way associated with robberies,” Lanier added.
D.C. Water is currently working on the First Street Tunnel project to alleviate flooding in Bloomingdale, which has closed streets and reduced the number of eyes on them for months. Although it is expected to wrap up later this summer, D.C. Water General Manager George Hawkins said in a statement on Monday that his agency would take several actions to “enhance security” near its construction sites in Bloomingdale in collaboration with contractors and MPD. These include checking and repairing lighting, improving visibility by removing “noise blankets” on area homes (which “can be rehung as needed during heavy construction”), adding patrols composed of off-duty police officers and private security guards, and offering free shuttle rides 24 hours a day.
Rich’s father told the Washington Post that his son “wanted to make a difference.” He worked as a voter expansion data director.