On the home page of the D.C. Police Department‘s website, there is a big space devoted to “MPDC News.” Below that little banner are headlines and links usually devoted to murders, and arrests for murders. I noticed that the arrests kind of stick around. The news of crimes, well, not so much or not at all.
If you wanted to find out about last night’s brazen murder in Adams Morgan, don’t bother hearing about from the D.C. Police web team. It’s not on the department’s site at all. If you wanted to get the latest on that Kenyon Street shooting this morning that left one dead and one five-year old seriously injured? Forget the D.C. Police web people. That shooting took place at 8:15 a.m. But you wouldn’t know it if you relied on the D.C. Police site.
I know this is a small point. News outlets wouldn’t be able to write about these shootings if they didn’t get word from the police. But for the average citizen who wants to check out the latest crime news, the D.C. Police’s own site just isn’t fast enough or diligent enough. And sometimes, it feels like they ignore the bad stuff. Or at least sit on it.
I know there are individual officers who do a good job on the listservs. But there are less than a handful of web-first officers out there.
Seriously, the last news item they have is three days old.
Update 2:23 p.m.: D.C. Police just sent out the press release on the Adams Morgan shooting. Here are the details:
“Detectives assigned to the Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide and Sexual Offenses Branch are currently investigating a homicide that occurred on Champlain Street, NW.
Shortly after 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, December 10, 2008, police were called to the 2200 block of Champlain Street, NW, to investigate the sounds of gunshots. Upon arrival, officers located an adult male in the rear of that location suffering from apparent multiple gunshot wounds. That victim was subsequently transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead at 8:56 p.m.
A second victim, an adult male, was also located at 18th Street and Kalorama Road, NW, suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. That victim was transported to an area hospital for treatment of injuries that appeared to be non-life threatening. His identity is being withheld due to the fact that he is a potential witness in this case.
The decedent in this case has been identified as 21-year-old Derrell Goins of the 600 block of Edgewood Street, NE.”