The story of Bill Mitchell’s death on Jan. 19 has been as much about the Truxton Cirle neighborhood as the crime itself. Mitchell was shot while intervening in a dispute between a man and woman on the street, according to reports. Residents have said they were shocked, but not entirely surprised.
The corner of Fl and N. Cap have been a problem as long as I’ve lived here (10 years) if not longer. There are several bus stops and a liquor store on that corner and there have been several failed attempts by BACA (Bates Area Civic Assoc) and other organizations to close up the liquor store and address that corner.
Part of the problem is the concentration of social services in the area.
Last night, city leaders toured the area:
The troubled intersection is on the edge of the District’s ongoing gentrification, and that complicates the task cleaning up the neighborhood, as Sommer Mathis of TBD reports:
Whatever attempts at quick fixes might be put in place, it’s a situation Bates Area Civic Association president Geovani Bonilla believes won’t really go away unless the city addresses what he sees as a confluence of forces all converging at this single geographic point. “We’ve got 13 social programs and service providers, and five liquor stores. And that’s just in this small area,” Bonilla says. Those populations are now regularly running into the gentrification wave, he adds, the younger couples and families who are buying up the area’s bountiful rowhouses at an ever more rapid pace. “The new people to the neighborhood end up creating more targets” for crime, he says.
If you live in this neighborhood, does this match what you’ve seen? We invite you to share your experiences in comments.