German Village Society 11th Precinct Neighborhood Safety Forum
Emergency line – 911 | Columbus Non-Emergency line: (614) 645-4545
I Want To Get Involved For German Village Safety!
June 13, 2018 Safety Meeting
March 14, 2018 Safety Meeting
Other Useful Links:
LexisNexis Community Crime Map https://communitycrimemap.com/
City of Columbus Website https://www.columbus.gov/
Franklin County Municipal Clerk of Courts http://www.fcmcclerk.com/
Franklin County Common Pleas Clerk of Courts https://clerk.franklincountyohio.gov/index.cfm
Ohio Mental Health and Addiction Services http://mha.ohio.gov/
Columbus Police Online Crime Report https://www.columbus.gov/police-offensetypes/
Franklin County Sheriff Sex Offender Search http://www.icrimewatch.net/index.php?AgencyID=55213&disc
Franklin County Animal Care & Control http://dogs.franklincountyohio.gov/services/field-services.cfm
Columbus City Attorney Prosecutor Division http://www.columbuscityattorney.org/prosecution.aspx
Franklin County Prosecutor http://prosecutor.franklincountyohio.gov/
Raids online web based crime stats www.raidsonline.com
- For Apple: http://itunes.apple.com/au/app/raids-online-mobile/id496011979?mt=8
- For Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bairanalytics.android.raidsonlinemobile
January 31, 2018
German Village Society Safety Chair Dan, GVS Trustee and Advocacy Pillar Liaison Josh Miller and staffer Mark Weiss attended Mayor Andrew Ginther’s safety strategy meeting last week. The mayor is doing a series of topics in a series of locations across the city this year, instead of one, formal State of the City. Safety initiatives can be read here.
November 8, 2017 Safety Meeting
Remaining City Council Meetings
During the Sept. 13 GVS Neighborhood Safety Dorum, the following conversation was held: The response to calls for police response seems to be inadequate too often, with the perception that people feel they are not being heard.
Response by Officer Medley. We don’t like that to happen. It comes down to resources. For
example, this year $25 million out of the police budget was spent on police body cameras. We
usually replace a hundred cars a year because they are run around the clock. This year no
replacements were budgeted.
Community member: Who do we address that to?
Medley: City Council.
Medley followed up via email with the list of remaining City Council meeting dates:
10/09/17 NO MEETING COLUMBUS DAY
10/16/17 Reg.Mtg.#49 & 50, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
10/23/17 Reg.Mtg.#51 & 52, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
10/30/17 Reg.Mtg.#53 & 54, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
11/06/17 NO MEETING
11/13/17 NO MEETING
11/20/17 Reg.Mtg.#55 & 56, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
11/27/17 NO MEETING
12/04/17 Reg.Mtg.#57 & 58, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
12/11/17 Reg.Mtg.#59 & 60, 5:00 & 6:30 p.m.
12/18/17 NO MEETING
12/25/17 NO MEETING
September 13, 2017 – Neighborhood Safety Forum & Police Luncheon meeting
National Night Out Taps Into GV Safety Efforts
Set for Tuesday, August 1 National Night Out (NNO) is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live.
How does this align with our neighborhood?
For beginners, let’s not forget that safety is one of the top two tenets we care about most (sidewalks the other).
In fact, similar to sidewalks some of your neighbors have already started to canvas the neighborhood for lighting improvement. A group of 13 volunteers have already surveyed 63 blocks and 443 addresses to see where we can light up the “dark spots” for improved safety at night.
While the street lights are the City’s responsibility (and the Safety Committee plans to report unsafe areas to the City), keeping those porch and exterior light bulbs fresh and flipping the switch is something you as a neighbor can do to help improve safety in GV.
Wanna join our lighting efforts? Contact our Safety Liaison Dan Glasener at email@example.com.
Also, NNO has begun a series of tidbits to help share what other communities are doing across the nation, and wouldn’t you know it they’re tapping into dog walkers.
Even the simplest task of walking your dog allows all neighbors to be extra ears and eyes to help inform neighbors and local safety officers of suspicious characters, something many of our neighbors already do. Before your next walk, click on the video and join the effort!
Learn More About Columbus Police
German Village Neighborhood Safety Forum
June 14, 2017 – Neighborhood Safety Forum & Police Luncheon meeting
March 8, 2017 – German Village Meeting Haus
Dan Glasener opened the meeting at 6:30 to a crowd of nearly 50 concerned neighbors including Council Member Brown and 3 Sergeants of the Columbus Police Department. Please fill in this form and mail it to or drop it at the Meeting Haus to get involved.
Sgt. of the community liaison officers for the South Side filled in for Officer Medley, who was unavailable and he was taking Medley’s place to discuss how officers operate in criminal situations. Officers take ownership of zones on the South Side, and report on the day’s activity in each zone to identify trends in crime that may trigger a need for increased patrol/action.
In cases where a series of events occurs, the topic is discussed with liaison officers and detectives and a strategy is formed to address and resolve.
Sometimes the City will allocate assets to the issue without necessarily addressing the public. This is so the criminal/suspect is not made aware of the increased presence.
Officers are keenly aware of an uptick in crime in a specific area, but they don’t always notify of specific action as policy.
Question: Status of investigation in German Village muggings?
Answer: It’s a current open investigation, not all facts were known by Sergeant and the Public Information Officer is best contact.
Question: Connection to Short North murder, the suspect had a monitor, is the GPS
Council Member Brown: “I am certain” that GPS is being looked at. No further information beyond this being an open/active investigation. No timeframe on an answer was released. The peace to be given to Villagers, is that the individual in question is in jail, and the City has allocated further resources to the investigation.
Grove City is conducting a homicide investigation, and as part of a homicide investigation, there is no release of information to patrol until the completion of the investigation.
Zach Scott – Second shift Sergeant, day –to-day calls for service in 11th precinct.
Plain clothes police officers: mid-watch (not just 11th precinct) has more resources early in the morning on patrol. But entirely dependent on resources, not every day.
Neighbor question: How much of a presence compared to 12-18 months ago?
From 2-10p, 17 officers assigned, 4 bike cops, depending on staff levels, could be cruisers. Primary responsibility is to manage calls for service, specifically told lately to give more attention to our area. This is the same staffing as it was 18 months ago.
When appropriate to contact Medley: Call number, leave message, hours are very different and flexible depending on 11th Precinct needs. His job is to assist the quality of life and community interaction.
Shiloh Todorov: After meeting with board officers and Chief Kim Jacobs, a challenge to how we take this energy and passion for safety to be engaged now and in the future. It’s a proactive measure for the next criminal out there. Advocacy for additional officers could be a solution, but the goal is to not focus on one aspect of crime but ALL aspects.
2) Cameras – public and private space, results of whether this is a great deterrent were mixed after a few hours of research. But a camera
3) Bike patrol, who have radio communication directly to cops. GVS has taken action to work on current models in other neighborhoods for better comprehensive understanding.
4) Self-defense courses. The Rec Center has come up with multiple options in the spring, one-day and nine-week courses.
5) Block Watch.
GVS is willing to engage neighbors through the Safety Committee and Long Range Planning, but neighbors will be required for specifics on taking action. Neighbors will be relied upon to volunteer and take action as advocates.
Neighbor Question: What’s the tolerance of neighbors as to how much neighbors are expected to take on to combat the growing theft/assault in our area?
Answer: Where can we be good advocates? Never let anything go, because reports (no matter how trivial) drive the data to support further City resources and attention. A way to control our fate as neighbors and tolerance of small crime is in neighbors hands as far as letting nothing slip through the cracks. There has been evidence of stagnant reporting, no increase, no decrease, yet we know there’s an increase in crime.
Surveys were distributed to provide feedback, and to address the need for volunteers and engagement on the direction we take as a community. These can be found here (link).
Tim Myers – German Village Community Watch. Has reached out to neighbors to try and get out during evening (bike, dog, jog, etc.) to add as extra eyes and ears. Initial reaction was positive, but now we’re looking at next steps on a community scale with structure, strategy and schedule.
Strictly volunteer, very informal, but a line of formal communication to police is being established.
You can sign up through a calendar site called TeamUp. When you go to the calendar, you can pick times to cover a specific part of the neighborhood. The calendar works similar to setting an appointment in Outlook. Read more about the founder in ThisWeek News
Questions from Todorov:
Are there other action items through this program?
-Identifying “dark spots”. Putting flyers on cards where these dark spots exist.
-Email firstname.lastname@example.org for step-by-step instructions on how to volunteer and canvas.
So far, there are 3-4 neighbors that have regularly taken shift, but many more are needed to make the impact we’re hoping for. Double and triple booking certain spots on the schedule are okay, more eyes/ears, the better.
Day and evening shift, female and male. The action is to use a level of common sense, but reporting suspicious activity is goal number 1.
Question: Can we decrease the speed on Third or other areas for pedestrian heavy traffic.
Council Member Brown: Speed trailers have been requested, but volunteer neighbors to record daily speeds that coordinated and data driven to justify a change in speed.
Council Member Brown: Anytime there are problems in the community like this, neighbors truly make the different. Knowing your neighbor and volunteering makes a difference. “ It’s important for you to get engaged.” Public safety is one of Brown’s primary responsibilities, he came to answer German Village’s call. His objectives are also resource allocation, and understanding which communities need a certain level of resources dependent upon data from Crime Strategy. “Whenever a problem occurs, you have to make a phone call. Make sure you make the phone call and hold the police accountable for those circumstances.”
Population of Columbus has grown, we need more police officers. Demographics and population have changed. Chief Jacobs re-evaluates every six months to determine where resources should be allocated. Personal safety is the highest priority, and Brown’s position to help the community improve safety, but he needs to hear the improvements from the community itself.
Question: Two years ago, taxes were increased under the auspice that police and fire were supported. Fire departments have been seen on Greenlawn and Fulton, but what about police?
Brown: Those tax increases went to support additional patrol equipment, specifically cameras and cruiser technology. Estimated 1500 additional firefighters, 1900 additional police officers since these tax increases. The City needs to improve how the job is done, not necessarily more bodies.
We will do what we need to do to ensure your safety as a community, but we NEED YOU to engage and be active as well in this mission.
“I’ll come back.”
Josie Merkle was in attendance to share her experience has the first victim in a string of assaults in the German Village area. She thanked the police, community and GVS for the support she’s received since the incident. She feels comfortable that the police and detectives are doing all they can, but shares her frustration that it’s taking so long to close the case. She understands the length of the process leaves her feeling confident that these efforts will place the perpetrator behind bars as long as necessary.
She shared what she believed to be something she could empower neighbors to do to thwart future criminal attempts. The layout of a neighbor’s garage may have made a difference. Motion detectors, cameras, keeping your door closed before getting into your vehicle are all advisable, difference-making Making noise as loud as possible is what saved her life. “I’m not going to stop walking, and I’m not going to stop enjoying our neighborhood.” But she went on to point out efforts that individuals can make to be more aware and diligent.
Question: How long does it take from when a patrolling officer responds, to when a detective is assigned?
Police answer: Detectives will be on the scene immediately in the case of a violent crime. Lack of evidence may be a reason for not showing up immediately on the scene, but rather a response to a hospitalized victim. Robbery is a different department and robbery detectives are called to the scene.
Sergeant: Fight, make a stand, get DNA where possible. You have most control over where you’re a victim. Meaning, choose a spot where you make your stand, don’t just go with the perpetrator’s choice.
Plain clothes female officers were on foot during assaults. Plain clothes officers are on foot looking for package theft. Residents may not be aware that effort and resources are being allocated, but police do take it personal and are patrolling where those resources exist.
February 7, 2017 Meeting Notes
German Village Society and the 11th Precinct held a safety meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 7. The meeting was called as an urgent and direct response to the recent string of violent assaults and robberies, in GV and surrounding neighborhoods.
There were 125+ residents, Councilmember Michael Stinziano, and 9 high-ranking officers, including the Community Response Team leader, Community Crime Patrol, Zone 5 Commander, 11th Precinct leader, robbery lead, and our Community Liaison Officer Robin Medley.
Medley has asked all Villagers, especially those in the vicinity of the four recent attacks, to check their security camera footage in the past 10 days in case there is an image of the attacker that can help police make an arrest. Send them to Medley’s email, provided at the bottom. Locations of the recent attacks in German Village were 836 Bruck, Frankfort and Mohawk, Sycamore and High, 970 Jaeger, plus two at Nationwide Children’s.
Here are more notes from the meeting:
Description of suspect varies because of trauma but try to notice things OTHER than mask – tattoo, haircut, eye color, scar
Every officer in the zone is aware of the issue, as is CM Mitchell Brown who has promised help to Strausbaugh.
The city is always adding on-street cameras, but there are not any city-controlled cameras currently in German Village.
- 4 in GV + 2 at Children’s seem to be the same person – not totally confirmed
- Description is male, black, 150-200, 20s-30s, 5’5”-6’1”, sometimes wearing a dark (not sure of color) hoodie, using a turtleneck to cover face, has had gloves on (which may be a clue to look for in warmer weather), has used a knife or a gun including witness report of pistol-whipping Feb. 6
- If you see ANYTHING report it – call 911. You’ll be transferred if it’s non-emergency. Don’t assume someone else has called, or that the information you have is irrelevant.
- Usually it is not the people breaking into cars who make the leap to assault and robbery.
- All victims have been women. Robber may perceive that men are a bigger fight.
- German Village is the focus of the 11th precinct since the attacks; and officers give attention to the Village before this attack, too.
- Police believe the attacker is likely feeding a drug habit.
- No witness reports have indicated a vehicle – he’s always on foot when reports have been filed.
- Attackers have so far preyed on people with items to steal, but everyone should assume they could be a victim until an arrest is made – even if you are walking your dog or running.
- Officers don’t always go directly to the location of the report – they may try to pick up the reported trail of the attacker and catch him. Someone will attend to a victim’s immediate report and health.
Personal safety tips:
- Walk in pairs.
- Walk with confidence.
- Carry a flashlight – both for light and to show something like a weapon.
- Walk with your key in your hand in a way you can use it as a weapon.
- Police do recommend pepper spray – but use it with care so you don’t blast yourself.
- Keep alert – don’t text/read/talk and walk – plus, your phone is a theft target.
- Scream, scratch, flail, get attention. Use those pepper spray/key/flash light weapon. If they seem to want your purse or your keys, throw those items AWAY from your body and run in the opposite direction. Do NOT go anywhere with an attacker.
- Use your neighbors and let them know to look for you coming and going – even on a daily basis, not just on vacations.
- Schiller Rec Center is working to create a self-defense course by month’s end, and we will share that info when we have it.
- If you are a victim – whether of an assault, petty theft or a package theft – GO TO COURT. You have to bring the heat beyond police but up to the court process.
- Every single home in German Village should leave your lights on 24/7 to deter crime.
Columbus Division of Police Contact
Robin Medley, Community Liaison Officer, email@example.com, 614-645-1411
Community Crime Patrol Contact
Ellen Moore Griffin, Executive Director, firstname.lastname@example.org, 614-291-4262 – These are volunteer and trained citizens who patrol in German Village 7 p.m. – 3 a.m. each night and are radio connected to police. They call in suspicious activity, code violations, abandoned vehicles and more. Until the GV attacker is caught, they will offer escorts on an on-demand basis at the number above.
911 Emergency Calls 614-645-4545 (non-Emergency calls)
Be a good witness – OBSERVE:
WHERE is the emergency occurring. At your current location or a different location?
WHAT is going on / why is this happening?
WHEN did the emergency occur?
WHO is involved; give a description of suspect and/or vehicle including license tag.
WEAPONS are they involved? What type of weapon and who has the weapon?
The GVS Safety Committee is chaired by Dan Glasener. If you would like to get involved with helping to shape the Safety Mission of the German Village Society, please contact Dan at email@example.com or 614-586-1053 x 5.
Join us this year to make safety improvement a focus. These meetings will allow neighbors to take responsibility for aspects of brainstorm, research, block-watch consideration, and more ways we can help ourselves, and help officers to find a convict criminals and keep them in jail.
All meetings are at the Meeting Haus.
MARCH 8 – 6:30 p.m. – Ned & Josie Merkle and Councilmember and Public Safety Chair Mitchell Brown will attend
JUNE 14 – 12:30 p.m.
SEPTEMBER 13 – 12:30 p.m.
NOVEMBER 8 – 6:30 p.m.
DECEMBER 6 or 13 – 12:30 p.m. (tentative Saint Mary School)
A small group of enthusiastic neighbors gathered for the GVS Safety Committee meeting on 9/21.
Several topics were discussed, including the recent incident in Schiller Park, when a jogger was grabbed. A more visible police presence in the park has been noted. An idea was discussed in regards to “leveraging” the involvement of the Rec Center, Actors Theater, Friends of Schiller, GVS and other groups interested in making Schiller park a safer and friendlier place to gather. The committee will work with GVS leadership on reaching out to these groups.
Going forward, the Quarterly Police luncheon will be known as the “Neighborhood Safety Forum.” The event will continue to invite the participation (and provide lunch for) of the Columbus police , but is also aimed at deepening the safety discussion and developing more safety advocates in the neighborhood.
There is the need to become advocates for safe neighborhoods, beyond the “police lunch.”
Ideas for spreading the word include using twitter (#safeingv) and posting a photo or discussion as it relates to safety observations and concerns, in a fun yet responsible way.
Given the HIGH priority placed on safety by the neighborhood, it was suggested that ALL GVS meetings (committee, board, projects, etc) include a “spotlight on safety.”
The Safety Committee is enthusiastic about hosting a “Holiday Brunch” for neighbors and Police to share together. More details to follow, but save the date of December 7!
The Next meeting of the Neighborhood Safety Forum will be Wednesday October 5 at 6:30 p.m. at the meeting Haus. Members of the Columbus Division of Police will be in attendance to share knowledge and experience.
PLEASE MAKE AN EFFORT TO ATTEND THIS SPECIAL EVENING MEETING
If you would like to be involved with the GVS Safety Committee, please contact Dan Glasener by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
July 13, 2016 Police Luncheon Notes
-by Bill Boys
Dan Glasener, Chair, German Village Society Safety Committee
Officer Robin Medley, Community Liaison Officer, 11th Precinct
Major Robert Strausbaugh, Zone 5 Commander
Lieutenant Ted Hasson
Officer Scott Peck, Community Liaison Officer, Downtown Columbus
Officer Joe Townsend
Officer Catherine Kirk, Community Liaison Officer, Citizen Police Academy
Fifteen citizens were in the audience.
Comments by Zone 5 Commander
Commander Strausbaugh emphasized the importance of the Citizen Police Academy (see more below). It allows citizens to get a perspective on how the Columbus Division of Police works, and how policing works in general in the United States. The alumni of the Academy are a great resource for them, and help out – “Red, White and Boom” being a good example.
Zone 5 is the smallest zone in the city, but the highest concentration of people. He is “passionate about my job,” and has been a lifelong resident of Columbus except for four years’ duty in the Marine Corps. He is willing to put the Columbus Police Department up against any in the country “because we are that good.” Ninety-nine percent of the community supports the police department, but as he tells young officers, police deal 99% of the time with the remaining 1% of the community. Everybody has a bad day from time to time, but if you ever have a bad day with any of his officers, take it up with his sergeant. If you don’t get satisfaction there, by all means contact Internal Affairs, but issues can largely be resolved by talking with the officer’s sergeant.
As Commander of Zone 5 here in the last couple of months he deals with a majority of protests since downtown is part of this region. Lt. Hasson is his resident expert, and puts together the Commander’s policing action plans. This is going to continue all the way up to November because Ohio is a very important state; a lot of people come to Columbus.
Commander Strausbaugh said that German Village is a community where people generally know their neighbors. But you get out into the suburbs, people drive home, pop open their garage doors with their remotes, and drive into their homes. It is amazing how many suburban people do not know their neighbors. Where communities are involved, there’s much less crime. Even up in the 7th Precinct there’s a neighborhood where the community is involved and it’s like a little pocket of heaven: beautiful houses, yards maintained.
Heroin is a significant problem here in Columbus and everywhere in the nation. It is tragic the number of peoples’ lives that are affected. The CPD has a pilot project where officers are carrying Narcon to counteract overdosing. So far they have saved at least three lives. Commander Strausbaugh foresees that every officer, or at least one officer in every precinct, will be trained in how to use it. He added that their job is to save lives, and if they have to administer it three times to the same individual, they don’t mind. It gives them a chance to get into treatment. “We just do our job.” They can’t leave [the Narcon] in their patrol cars because they sit outside in all kinds of weather, unlike fire department vehicles, which are kept in climate-controlled buildings. The heroin problem contributes to the crime problem because addicts need the $30 for a hit. He suggested that the next time you see a neighbor leaving something valuable inside a parked car, knock on their door and say, “Hey, do you really want to leave that laptop in your car?” There’s one guy they have arrested several times and he tells them straight out that when he gets out he’s going straight back to breaking into cars.
Commander Strausbaugh referred to “the three L’s” – lights, landscaping and locks. If given a choice between a lighted house and an unlighted one, criminals will choose the unlighted one. Locking includes window locks – if someone is trying doors to see if they’re unlocked, they’ll also try windows. Make sure you don’t have bushes blocking a major portion of your front or back to your house where someone could hide. He invited questions from the audience.
Citizen: I want to say thank you to you, Commander, and to all the officers here. Obviously our country is going through a difficult time – Dallas, Minnesota, Baton Rouge. I believe our department is excellent, and is visited by other departments. I appreciate what Dan Glasener is doing to reposition our community relationship with the police. I think community policing is the hard part for the police, complicate by the opioid crisis. People on opioids don’t think. So we need to take some initiative in working with the police, and I think we’ve done a pretty good job, but as I look around I see that many others are not here. Our department has worked hard at community relations. If we don’t respect these officers, who are trying to help us, we’re not going to be a civilized community like we have been in the past. Secondly, I would say push back a bit against those who say our department does not have good community relations by asking for evidence, not just rumor. I think the facts bear out that we have one of the best, if not the best departments in the country.
Citizen: Lots of German Villagers don’t belong to the German Village Society. We need to get the reports and advice out to them. (Commander Strausbaugh replied: I always say, Tell ten. Tell ten people, to get the word out.) (Dan Glasener added: we are getting the word out on Facebook and a few other ways, and the National Night Out is another way.)
Individual Officer introductions.
Lt. Hasson: We have something very good here in German Village. We have police departments coming in from across the country and Canada. We show them how we do community relations and bring them down here to illustrate it. They’re always in awe about how we do business in the community.
Sgt. Streng: After the Trayvon Martin shooting and some others we got more involved with some of the local pastors. John Boston got turned on and opened up our chaplain service to get more of a cross-section of religious faiths. That’s how I got thrown in to making speeches at congregations. It has built community relations.
Community Liaison Officer
Officer Robin Medley: I’ve been the Community Liaison Officer here for our 11the Precinct for about two years. The information sheet that’s being passed out is available online (raidsonline.com) and I post it on nextdoor.com. This is basically a two-week snapshot of criminal activity in our precinct. German Village is represented on the bar graph by “113.” Take the activity level with a grain of salt because it averages statistics over several years, which is how it comes up with “seven-tenths” of a robbery as typical for commercial robberies, for example, in this time period, and in this case since there were no commercial robberies here in this period this year, it reports “a 100% decrease” in this type of crime. Keep in mind these small numbers that affect the math when you look at this chart.
What we’re seeing the most of recently is thefts from automobiles. Most people in German Village have jobs, so they’re absent from their homes during the day, and with the nice weather, other people enter the Village, Schiller Park is beautiful, and some of the people who are on a drug habit need money to support the habit. An Oxycodone tablet sells for $30 on the street. If there’s anything that looks of value in your car, don’t think for a minute they won’t break the window to get at it. They do not have a conscience about taking your stuff.
In home burglaries, they go first for your bedroom, that’s where the valuable stuff is at. Second, they go for your medicine cabinet. They can sell your meds to drug dealers. If there are medications in there that you don’t use any more, dispose of them.
If they can see valuables through a window, like a laptop, a purse, a billfold, they can go for them.
So be a hard target. Pay attention if you see someone trying your neighbor’s doors, walking around the house peering in the windows; walking into the back yard. Normal delivery people don’t do that; they make their delivery and go on.
Call it in, 614-645-4545, or 911 if it’s a crime actually in progress. And it’s important to stay on the line with the dispatcher. Don’t hang up. Speak in a normal voice. Let them know things that don’t change about the person you’ve observed – for example, whether they’re a man or a woman. That doesn’t change. Other distinguishing features. Are they wearing glasses? Clothing description, including shoes. Is there a motor vehicle involved? Is its muffler noisy? Extra-wide tires? Things like that. Be as specific as possible.
Big nice house numbers on your home help us.
Citizen: [Questions about what number to call.]
Officer Medley: If you see a crime in progress, or someone being hurt, call 911. If you see suspicious activity, that in itself is not illegal, so call 614-645-4545. Depending on resources available we can send an officer around to check on it. Don’t call 311 – that’s for community service items.
Citizen: [Question about aggressive panhandling. Loud voice, abusive language, seemed to target tourists especially.]
Officer Medley: Anybody can hold a conversation with anybody else in a public place as long as it’s mutual. There is an Ordinance against aggressive panhandling. Anytime somebody feels threatened we should be notified. I can’t always promise you someone can respond – it’s a triage kind of issue. But reporting it can be a help to us, because it gives us a legitimate reason to approach a person and ask them about it. Just asking them about it may help change the behavior.
Citizen: A lady was outside my shop soliciting for some kind of a homeless program. When I spoke to her about it she said, “Well, I have a badge. I’m allowed to do this.” I didn’t know what to do.
Officer Medley: You can ask the person if they have a solicitation permit. You can ask them about their organization. If they’re legitimate, they won’t have a problem with that. They wouldn’t want to create negative publicity for their business or organization. Then from there if you still have a problem or some reservations, you can call us.
Citizen: [Question about the structure of the Police Department.]
Officer Medley: The city covers 225 square miles. It’s broken down into five big chunks, called Zones. Each Zone has four Precincts. German Village is in Zone 5, 11th Precinct. Precincts are subdivided into cruiser districts. Your cruiser district is 113.
Citizen: How does our area compare with others as to crime?
Officer Medley: Yours is a lot lower. Crime information is available online. There are apps for mobile devices to access it, too.
Citizen Police Academy
Officer Catherine Kirk, of the Citizen Police Academy, was introduced. Dan Glasener mentioned that he had taken the course and highly recommended it.
Officer Kirk: The class runs for twelve sessions, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. The next one will be on Wednesdays, starting Aug. 17.
We’re focusing on relationships. We figure if we can get to know you better and you get to know us better, that forum can be great for two-way communications. People can find out how things work, and they can give us their perspectives, too.
There’s a maximum of 40 persons per class. The location is at the intersection of I-71 and Hague Road. Another class will start around February. If you have to miss a class or two, there are ways to make that up.
Brochures were passed out, and application forms were available.
Lt. Hasson: If you know someone who would make a good police officer, they can go online to https://www.columbus.gov/police/ and click on Police-Recruitment for recruiting information.
More Citizen questions
Citizen: I’ve seen people wandering around with this new online game, Pokemon-Go, and I’m concerned about kids’ safety as they walk around focusing intently on their cell phone screens.
Lt. Hasson: I’ll tell you a funny story about that. My seven year old daughter came to me the other night and said to me, “Dad, have you heard about this Pokemon-Go? You’re a policeman; you probably ought to know about this stuff. You’re going to see a bunch more kids going about the neighborhood.” I said, “What?!” My eleven year old daughter said, “C’mon, dad, you gotta get with the times.”
[I missed who said this]: One of the things is, this kind of thing can distract you, and one of the things we always say is be aware of your surroundings. Especially if you’re in an isolated situation. And also, impress on your kids, grandkids, nephews and neices: technology is not going to go away. If you’ve never met someone in person, they are a stranger. I don’t care how much you’ve corresponded with them, how much you’ve been playing games with them forever, if they’ve sent you a picture – anyone can [pretend to] be anyone on the internet.
Upcoming events and schedule:
Dan Glasener: National Night Out will be Aug. 2.
We’re thinking of an evening meeting in October.
We’re also thinking of a special meeting in December, probably during the day, with a lunch for our police officers, possibly in conjunction with bringing something in to support one of the police charities.
June 1, 2016 Note From Our Liaison Officer
There has been an increase of thefts of purse/wallet/backpacks from residences within our area. These particular thefts are unique from our regular theft from autos and open garages. Suspects are observing purses, wallets, backpacks, computer bags, etc. placed by a residential window. The suspect(s) are then breaking the window and quickly taking the items from inside and fleeing the area. Credit cards are then immediately used and others items sold for quick cash.
Please remember to keep valuables away from windows and blinds shut when not home to not advertise your valuables. Homes within close distance to sidewalks are especially more prone to these new thefts.
Officer Robin Medley #142
Community Liaison Unit 11 Precinct
120 Marconi Blvd. Cols. OH. 43215
Work # (614) 645-1411
Fax # (614) 645-4111
April 28, 2016 Luncheon Notes
3 officers | 7 members of the public | Safety Committee Chair Dan Glasener moderator | Dinner provided by Two Caterers
Officers wanted to emphasize how to be a good witness, such as reporting not just that a package was stolen, but the rough dimensions of the package. Instead of saying “a white male,” try to describe height/weight/clothing/facial hair. You might also use your phone to take pics.
A neighbor, new to German Village, asked about the area covered by Precinct 11. It goes from Alum Creek to the river and the interstate to Frebis.
There was discussion about a German Village block watch. Dan said the Safety Committee is interested in exploring an official block watch; but the past police liaison for GV considered the police luncheons the block watch for GV.
One neighbor questioned how to report suspicious people, but not be a pest to officers. Officers said to go with your gut and call to report anything that makes you feel off.
One neighbor asked about the map of GV crimes versus the entire 11th Precinct. Officers agreed with his characterization of GV as an oasis of relatively low crime levels and virtually no violent crime.
Dan asked about panhandlers. An officer said it is an issue of supply and demand – if you don’t want panhandlers, don’t hand them money. Police can give them a ticket if they are on public property, but that often ends up not being paid and giving the panhandler a night in jail and three square meals.
Dan asked about what the impact of neighbors “showing up” has on court proceedings. An officer shared a memory from another neighborhood’s home invasion string from a decade ago. The neighborhood packed the courtroom, each neighbor spoke to the judge and the ringleader was sentenced to 256 years.
Dan asked about how to get police at a 2nd annual National Night Out for German Village. Police said if it is known, police will attend. NNO is a night when neighbors can get to know each other and share information.
The new German Village Safety Committee also met last week.
Safety Committee Minutes 4/26:
Attendance: Abby Lavelle, Greg Lashutka, Catherine Adams, Jeff Ferriell, Ofcr. Medley, Dan Glasener, Sarah Sands
-Conversation seemed to focus more on cause of theft in the area – namely heroin addiction
-Actionable Items moving forward: rebranding of Police Luncheon and National Night Out planning
- Attendance may not be what it is b/c Jerry was asking his friends to show, his friends came b/c of him and were retirees (able to make 1230)
- Need to change to a time where people can attend – possibly only doing evening editions
- Quarterly vs. Monthly
- Keeping monthly meetings btw principles in order to have a structured approach to quarterly meetings in evening so more community can attend
- How to keep open forum going where questions are asked, but having a hook to get people to attend (guest speakers, specific topics, etc.) – while still keeping a reasonable time limit
-Medley was very clear these come across as a “waste of time” b/c of attendance – he admits it was harsh but believes there’s a way to make this worth officer’s time and community’s time
-Need a theme and established program to go with these evening editions
-Officer’s appreciate the meal, but many can’t make it most times, if there were meals split by shifts (i.e. noon and 4 p.m. for officer’s to just drop by for a meal, more appreciated than a monthly meeting where it’s difficult to make)
National Night Out:
- Clear action we want neighbors to take
- PR to show the success
- Something beyond handouts/education – need to SHOW, need GOALS
- CPD won’t show unless there’s some turnout from community, so have to be mindful of what this looks like for neighbors and officers
Some key actions neighbors can take:
- Stop saying “I don’t want to get involved”
- This can’t be an excuse not to report a crime, b/c action is taken based upon the number of reports/the stats that back up the issues
- Limited info = limited enforcement
- When reporting, the more info the better. Officers need specifics
- Ways neighbors can get a judicial response = get involved!: A regular night to City Council where neighbors coordinate attendance to get a response/reaction from the right people; SHOW UP AT SENTENCING
- Need 3 consistent, important goals for the safety in German Village – then repeat these until we’re blue in the face
- You can make your car a hard target by hiding/eliminating meds from sight
- Panhandling: Capital Crossroads is a great resource that preaches giving responsibly, also states where it’s legal/illegal to panhandle
Police Meeting & Lunch – February 25, 2016 — Minutes
Attendance — 6 officers (who each introduced themselves) and 16 GVS members and staff
DM Caldwell called the meeting to order at 12:30 pm by thanking Dan Glasener as sponsor and Kolache Republic for providing today’s lunch. Then he announced the following important dates:
March 31@ 9 a.m. – sentencing for Cody Brush who burglarized houses in GV. Members who are able to attend should call 614-525-4011 for time and location in courthouse or write to Judge O’Donnell.
March 31 – police meeting at 12:30 pm
April 28 – police meeting at 6:30 pm
August 2 – National Night Out in which GV will participate in again
The chair reported the following survey results from the Safety Committee:
- Establish a Task Force to promote a safety plan
- Survey of lighting and identify dark holes in our neighborhood
- Educate residents about what they can do to stay safe
- Have evening meetings with police
- Work outside our designated borders with neighboring Merion and Schumacher villages and the Brewery District.
Community liaison officer, Robin Medley, distributed and reviewed the 11 Precinct Bi-Weekly Stats for 2/9-2/22. In the review, he noted that our 110 cruiser district has the least incidents, robbery is defined as use of force or the threat of force, aggravated assault is an injury that lasts more than 48 hours, our area still has plain-clothed officers 24 hours/day, the most crime happens on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturdays
He continued with the following tips and requests – never hesitate to file a report, Trust your instincts, think of thieves like a “stray cat” and don’t feed them, light is always good, and use Leads Online to record the serial numbers of your possessions. Also use UV pens to mark your possessions and Officer Tim Wendling went to his car to get a pen for all in attendance.
In response to a question about noise in the neighborhood, he noted that reports from 2 separate households must be reported to the County Prosecuting Attorney, noise lasting more than 20 minutes is unreasonable, and noise should be recorded when possible. BUT FIRST, a conversation with the neighbors should have been held.
The meeting adjourned at 1:30 pm.
Submitted by Bonnie Beth Mitchell
1-28-16 Police Meeting
Meeting leader: Jeff Ferriell, GVS member and Capitol Law School professor
Jeff shared his history in German Village, including a robbery at a friend’s home 17 years ago. Jeff said the community of safety champions is using a meeting on Feb. 10 to regroup on safety and the police relationship after the passing of longtime leader Jerry Glick. The public is welcome.
Community Liaison Ofcr. Robin Medley introduced himself as the new community liaison officer for our 11th Precinct. He shared that he has been in that role in the city for 20 years.
Medley said out of 225 square miles of Columbus, the police break it down into zones, and German Village is in Zone 5. We are within the 11th Precinct of Zone 5. Then the precinct as cruiser districts that cover something nearly as defined as a neighborhood.
From Jan 12-25, Medley shared some statistics in the 11th Precinct. The 11th runs from Livingston to Frebis and the river to Alum Creek Drive. For those two recent weeks, there were 2 robberies at businesses and 18 at homes, plus 13 from cars. There were 7 cars stolen, 4 people were robbed, 2 assaulted and all of that results in 49 total crimes. Compared to two-week trends over time, these levels were categorized as a normal level of activity.
Next, Medley handed out a comparison between German Village and Merion Village for the total crimes in 2015.
|Crime Type||German Village 2015 Totals||Merion Village 2015 Totals|
|Burglary from Car||92||105|
|Motor Vehicle Theft||13||46|
Check raidsonline.com to check stats anytime you want.
A neighbor reported on a residential burglary on Ebner over the weekend. He said that while electronics weren’t touched in the house, jewelry and expensive bags were taken. The neighbor also said the victim reported having left at 7 and the alarm went off at 7:10, so wondered whether burglars are casing addresses. Medley said in interviews with criminals, they are NOT usually casing properties. He said many residential burglaries on the South Side are related to an addiction, and often go straight to a bedroom to look for pills. Medley said electronics often now have tracking devices and are more difficult to pawn. Medley said many burglars are teens wearing backpacks. Burglaries also tend to happen while people are away from home.
A different neighbor shared his story of being victimized by someone who knew where to sell his stolen jewelry, and was not in the habit of stealing electronics because he didn’t have someone to buy it. Medley said LeadsOnline has been developed to help buyers to look up details of stolen goods before they purchase it at pawn or metal recyclers.
Medley explained the Property Recovery unit, who has 8 officers who go to pawn shops and search for stolen goods. To help police, Medley encouraged neighbors to take pictures and right down sizes/serials of their valuables so when officers are searching for stolen goods, they have information. Women should make a list of everything in their purse, and men their wallets, and then lock that list in a safe deposit box.
Medley, answering a question, said German Village burglaries stay steady year-over-year while across the rest of the city they are rising. Medley said GV has a unique place for mail to be safely delivered (the Meeting Haus); and the neighborhood has many plain-clothes police watching at all times of day and the week. Another difference is that people who don’t live in GV are the thieves, where just a bit further south, Medley’s neighborhood groups suspect their neighbors.
A neighbor asked whether cars should be locked or unlocked. Medley said safe practice is to make it as difficult as possible to enter your car.
Medley connected the need for neighbors to report, report, report in order to justify more resources on our streets. So report everything! Non-emergency number is 645-4545. Jeff asked for a gut guess from Medley about how many crimes aren’t reported – and he shared an anecdote about having had a pot stolen from his own porch and not realizing it until weeks later. He said the inclination of many people is to not report that because that have so few facts to report to police.
A neighbor asked how police can look at those stats, such as 20 burglaries for two weeks, and help reduce that much further. Medley said police don’t look at 20 as acceptable.
Medley said Franklin County has a very high rate of criminal prosecution, which ties the hands of prosecutors to throw the book at so many thieves.
Medley said two ways to prevent crime: dogs and nosey neighbors. That got a good giggle from the audience. Don’t’ leave doors open, don’t advertise what you have (such as the box from the new TV), limit what you say on social media.
A neighbor shared that an officer has gone to his home while the neighbor was traveling. Someone had called and said the garage was open, so the neighbor called police from the road and the officer checked it out and got it closed. The neighbor wanted to make a donation to support police as a thanks, and Medley referred him to call Strategic Response Bureau.
Police Community Meeting – November 17, 2015
German Village Society has a new 11th Precinct Community Liaison Officer. Robin Medley will take the role Scott Peck has held for the past number of years.
GVS Executive Director Shiloh Todorov and safety champion and luncheon sponsor Dan Glasener of German Village Insurance were at the Columbus Police Training Academy on Tuesday night along with dozens of other block watch community members from across the city.
Community Relations Commission Executive Director Napoleon A. Bell welcomed the crowd. He noted that his office is the place for answers about code enforcement, information on new Americans and refugees and neighbor mediation. Their website is crc.columbus.gov or 645-1993.
Chief Kim Jacobs invited communityPolice Minutes – October 29, 2015 partners to applaud themselves for the work they do being the eyes and ears of police in every neighborhood. She emphasized that the department focuses on exemplary service and understand that they work for residents.
Jacobs pointed out an online link for residents to listen to police scanners – broadcastify.com. She shared some stats about the department, which includes 146 bike patrols, 1,900 officers, 17 school resource officers and 347 block watch associations. She said the department handled 703,000+ calls to dispatch in 2014.
The public is invited to apply for inclusion in the next Citizen Police Academy, which start in February. More information is here.
Chief Jacobs took questions from the crowd, which included some controversial matters making headlines. On police brutality, she said Columbus’ department is watching the rest of the nation to improve officer training and try to avoid mistakes. But officer are human, she noted, and there will be mistakes.
On Columbus choosing not to recruit as officers Muslims who wear headscarves, Jacobs said the policy isn’t anti-Muslim, it is in favor of maintaining a neutral uniform. She also noted that if the department allows one expression of religion in uniform, it will have to allow all.
On body cameras, the chief noted a nine-member task force is now studying how a policy would work. She noted the technology is expensive, but the task force is wrestling with issues such as whether the video recorded inside people’s homes is something that can or should be publicly available – as police record are. The task force meetings are public and the next is November 19 from 11 a.m. -1 p.m. at the Training Academy.
Jacobs said officers will soon start responding to posts on NextDoor.com, a community online gathering place.
Police Minutes – September 24,2015
Attendance: 9 officers, 6 public, 3 guests
Dan Glasener of German Village Insurance stepped in to lead the meeting while Jerry Glick is recovering from neck surgery at Grant.
Assistant Prosecuting Attorney at Franklin County Prosecutors Office Joseph Gibson was a guest attendee.
-A new neighbor brought up parking passes as he had moved from California. Our officers were very informative in providing guidance and resources, but also pointed out that it is the Parking Violations Bureau that is in charge of parking enforcement. It is City Permit A for the German Village area and 311 can be contacted for information regarding how to obtain a pass.
A great resource to come out of this discussion was a reference to the list of parking infractions that can be enforced – click here!
-Speeding along Third Street, specifically near St. Mary’s has become a growing issue. Officers are aware of the problem and cruisers will continue to be dispatched over the coming weeks to ticket drivers who are speeding.
-Questions surrounding property theft remain among neighbors and as always officers approached the topic identifying theft as a crime of opportunity. Officers warned residents that where there’s a will, there’s a way and even the simple task of closing your garage door while mowing your lawn is a preventive measure. AC units have been reported stolen in the past and locking your fence gates is another simple measure to deter would-be criminals. Don’t make yourself a target.
-Package Delivery Season is almost here and during the first part of December the 11th Precinct will dispatch 6 plain-clothes officers as this tactic produced several apprehensions and arrests last year. Neighbors are encouraged to have holiday packages delivered to the Meeting Haus if going out of town or just want to ensure safe delivery. Please have your packages addressed with your name, but our address- 588 S. Third St. Columbus, OH 43215.
-It was debated whether locked car doors or unlocked car doors are the best practice in the Village, some neighbors preferring to let criminals scrap for whatever they can find versus shattered glass from a broken window greeting them. Regardless if your door is locked, this is still a break in and is treated as such.
When a judge reviews a case involving theft, it is typically proof of stealth among other factors that determines whether the crime was burglary or breaking and entering. Our guest prosecutor Joe Gibson was on hand to address the topic. Convincing judges to send burglars to prison is very dependent on the record of the perpetrator. The presence of victims in the court room can carry little influence in judge’s decision, however the judge does want to hear/see participation from the community. The facts of the case, a record and the level of crime committed are more vital. In terms of plea deals, it can be very beneficial to a prosecutor’s case to have victims show up in court, but sentencing is not based on this presence.
-Solicitors have increased door-to-door in the Village, and officers want residents to know that all solicitors need a permit. Neighbors are encouraged to take the name of the solicitor and ask to see said license. In most cases, the solicitor is in danger of trespassing, sometimes criminal trespassing if a residence is listed on the do-not-solicit registry.
8-27-15 Police Minutes
Jerry Glick welcomed and introduced 14 officers and congratulated them for a recent rankings as most customer-service friendly police force.
Dinner for the officers by Plank’s Pizzeria was paid for out of a sponsorship by German Village Insurance.
“Mr. T” showed the assembled 18 members of the public some strategies to protect themselves. The officer said it is a good idea to trust your gut – if something doesn’t feel right, it may be true. That intuition is part of the successful evolution of humankind. A police officer’s or citizen’s best defense is their hands. Shoving two fingers in an opponent’s eyes will stop most folks cold. Stomping a thief’s foot will get their attention. A kick in the groin works. Crocs or flip-flops are terrible – you can’t run or fight. High heels are good for fighting, not so much for running. Aim to push your thumb as far into the eye socket as possible. Grab for the ears and pull with the intent to pull them off. It takes 60 pounds of pressure to break a knee pushing or standing on it against the bend.
Then some volunteers were called up to demonstrate and practice.
The officer who arrested the woman accused of stabbing someone along Third Street said that the victim is going to be fine and the accused likely has some mental illness issues. She is charged with felonious assault.
8/27/15 ThisWeek News column: Volunteers Fuel Fresh Focus On Safety
7/30 Police Luncheon Minutes
Police – 7
Public – 14
Jerry Glick called the meeting to order at 12:30 pm and asked each of the policemen to introduce themselves.
The success story noted by the police was the arrest of 3 people whom they believe were involved in the recent number of car burglaries in the neighborhood. Again they talked about method, threat and opportunity for the troublemakers and our role in preventing opportunity. They also mentioned the importance of filling reports and recording serial numbers for items that are owned. Right now we need to be especially observant of garages, youth in groups, and items on porches and in yards.
John Kuijper, chairman of the National Night Out event for German Village asked for:
- volunteers (30-40) to go door-to-door on Sunday evening from 7-8:30 pm distributing 1,000 safety tips made available by a local printer, and
- participation by everyone on Tuesday from 7-10 pm to keep lights on, walk dogs, and generally be outside talking to neighbors about safety in our neighborhood.
The next meeting will be at 7 pm on Aug 27 in Fest Hall. Topic is ‘What do we do IF…’
6/25 Police Luncheon Minutes
Approximately 30 people in attendance, including 16 Ohio State University students who are doing some work on the Southside seeing firsthand how the Police connect with the community.
– Take all valuables out of car!! People will check door handles and steal anything, even if it is just loose change that is visible.
– Call 645-4545 if you see someone suspicious; when you call provide a description of what the individual(s) look like, where you saw them and what direction the individual is headed. If the individual got into a vehicle, describe the vehicle and if possible license plate numbers
– Burglars sometimes sit on porches and wait and observe. If you see someone on a porch that you know does not reside there, you should call 645-4545 to report a suspicious individual.
– Be careful who you hire! It is important to try to hire trustworthy contractors that will not take advantage of your kindness or divulge personal information.
– 80% of crimes that happen are from opportunity. Try to minimize anything that could be perceived as a potential theft opportunity.
– If someone knocks on your door late at night, you do not have to answer but you should let them know someone is in the home. You can indicate the home is inhabited either by turning on lights or yelling for them to leave.
– Positive: Bonnie Mitchell has a court date to prosecute the individual who had possession of her stolen vehicle last October.
Police Luncheon Minutes – May 28, 2015
1 police officer present – lunch from Gresso’s
A neighbor shared a success story: Kudos to our police force in this district! We were woken up to five police cruisers in front of our house at 12:30 AM this morning due to a crackhead trying to break into our neighbors car parked in their driveway on Mohawk Street. The police noticed before any alarm was set off or phone call made. The perp was handcuffed and taken away. The police literally said he was on “crack”. The response time was amazing to watch and made me feel secure living in our urban neighborhood. Thank you so much to our police men and especially the women. There were two women officers who were completely bad ass yet professional. I am confident that I can speak on behalf of our neighborhood and let the police officers who protect us on a daily basis know that we are grateful.
Join the Safety Committee Meeting if you would like to work as a group toward proactive community safety improvements.
If someone knocks on your door, ANSWER! You do not need to open the door, but you should respond in some fashion so that the knocker knows someone is in the building. Robbers commonly knock on a door to see if anyone is home and then if there is no response, they will walk into the back yard and break into the residence.
Most residential thefts occur during the day.
Report suspicious people day or night. While police cannot arrest someone on suspicion, they can run their name through the system to see if there are any warrants for the individual.
Felony convicts have DNA registered in the police database. A theft is considered a felony when it is $1,000+. Petty theft criminals do not have to submit a DNA swab.
Burglars commonly go straight to the master bedroom to find jewelry. Find unique places to hide your jewelry or lock it up before you leave your home.
The state is working towards a better background system that will allow counties to share criminal information.
Meet your neighbors and let them know when you are going on a vacation so that they can watch your house for suspicious activity.
Crack and heroin leads to reckless thefts
Self-defense tactics by Police Officer T will be taught at another police luncheon this year due to high interest levels
Police Luncheon Minutes – April 30, 2015
7 police officers; Jerry; 29 residents
Sid Druen – In March 2012, the Druen’s residence was broken into, while the Druens were on vacation. Blood was discovered on the window sill, which led to DNA analysis and discovery of the culprit. Working with Detective Spalding, the Druens were able to have a warrant issue and on May 1, 2015, the robber will be prosecuted and sentenced to two years in jail.
Anthony Teller, a package thief, was given 25-days in jail.
A few tips for self-protection by T.
-Do not engage. Try to walk or run away.
– If they want property, you should give it to them and avoid a physical confrontation.
– Do enough so that you can escape.
– Utilize fear as your ally.
– Conflict will only last a few seconds, so maximize your impacts by being repetitive.
-Do not ball your fists and punch, instead strike with the base of your palm. By impacting your attacker with a chin jab you can rip and tear at their face.
-Pushing throat with the base of your palm will create a gag reflex.
– Grab ears to rip and tear.
-If attacker comes from the rear, you can reach behind to rip and tear and also stamp your legs to hit their feet.
– When walking around the neighborhood, you should wear shoes that allow you to move quickly away from your attacker – no flip flops or crocs.
– You can stop someone bigger than you.
– Do not stop with 1-hit, be repetitive.
May 28 next meeting
Police Lunch – Evening Edition – March 19, 2015 Minutes
42 residents and business owners
Shiloh Todorov kicked off the meeting by sharing the safety and security were the No. 2 priority identified by stakeholders as areas for German Village Society to focus its resources on in the next five years. Todorov said tonight’s meeting was meant to help neighbors to understand more about the existing, strong, envy-of-the-city relationship between GVS and CPD. Then, those who would like to dig deeper into researching additional ways to enhance safety in the neighborhood are invited to a conversation on April 9 at 6 p.m. at the Meeting Haus.
The officer introduced themselves and their duty responsibilities.
Public Safety Director George Speaks commended those gathered are among the most experienced in the city. Speaks presented about his department’s duties within a half-billion dollar budget – or 65%+ of the city budget. It includes fire, police, dispatch, medics, and more.
Speaks was asked a question about how police are undertaking self-study, given recent headlines. Speaks said he’s proud of the study underway now, including professional evaluation of training, policies, manuals and more.
Police have 12 horses and six officer-riders. Cmdr. Strausbaugh said horses make for great ice-breakers with the community.
A resident said she’d been broken into the middle of the night, and asked whether 43206 has the worst break-ins in the city. Speaks said the police are the community and the community are the police – so it has to be a team effort. Cmdr. Strausbaugh said 43206 encompasses much more than GV, including a large part of the South Side. Strausbaugh said he left the last police lunch and researched whether break-ins are in fact getting worse in GV and they are not. There were three reported in a month.
Another resident said she could name three just on her block in a week. Strausbaugh asked whether each attempt is being reported to police to feed factual data.
Officer Liaison said no community is immune from property crime. Sometimes people could have done nothing different, but he said 85% of property crimes (nationally) are crimes of opportunity. Someone leaves a laptop in the car and it disappears, for instance.
Speaks spoke to how police resources are deployed. He said technology is increasingly used.
Strausbaugh asked whether people had heard of environmental design for community protection. Things like tall privacy fences give protection, for instance. Trees that block porches and doorways also create privacy for residents and places for “bad guys” to hide. Security services through the city will do a free safety assessment of your property to see whether your property is as safe as it can be. Call our GV Community Liaison Ofcr. Scott Peck (645-1411 or email@example.com). Don’t see something and say nothing – report. Report. Report. Leaving your porch lights on all the time helps, too, and is pennies per month. Landscaping as simple as small, noisy rocks can help you hear a thief.
Another way you can protect your items is to write down the serial numbers of every item you own that has one, and log it to online resources (leadsonline.com), lock them in a safety deposit box or store with an insurer. Take pictures, too, so if you are a victim pawn shops and police can track them down.
Ofcr. Peck presented the details of a recent arrest of a suspect who was breaking in to properties in the GV area. Officers watched the suspect commit small crimes for four hours. No calls on the incidents came from citizens. He was arrested in GV going up and down streets and alleys just wandering. He stole packages off porches, officers said, as they tailed him. They watched him go in a window on the side of a house on Ebner that was protected by an 8-foot high privacy fence. Officers saw him come out a back porch with his hands full of items. When he made eye contact with officers, he dropped the items and took off. He was arrested. Police subsequently talked to neighbors, at least one of which reported they’d seen the suspect acting fishy but didn’t call police.
A resident asked whether, if she something suspicious but not an emergency or crime in progress, should she call 911? An officer answered that 645-4545 is the number to call for suspicious activity, but if you aren’t sure, call 911 and they will transfer you if it is not an emergency but you can file a report.
Strausbaugh said the online and telephone reports are just as effective as a face-to-face officer-recorded report. Any theft for items over $3,000 will prompt a visit from an officer.
Former Mayor Greg Lashutka stood up to praise Jerry Glick for his relationship and leadership with police. Lashutka said neighbors have to be realistic about where they live and about actions we can personally take to be on the crime-fighting team. Lashutka said we are perceived as richer than we are and prime picking territory, so residents have to grapple with that reality and figure out how to protect themselves. Lashutka shared that 80% of crime is substance-abuse related.
Jerry previewed the April 30 police luncheon at 12:30 p.m. at the Meeting Haus. Police will go through a series of “what if” items to help residents defend themselves. Police will also share a video of reformed criminals who tell all about how they target victims.
March 3, 2015
Ever wonder what a cop’s day is like?
See firsthand with the Columbus Police Department Ride Along program! You can mail in or drop off applications to The Columbus Division of Police, 120 Marconi Bvd, Columbus, Ohio 43215 attn: Patrol Admin. Sgt.
February 26, 2015
Do not hire someone that knocks on your door for business. Find a firm you are interested in, ask for references, and call and check with the references to ensure they are a reputable business. Police handed out a Home Repair Scans Handout.
13 witnesses testified and put 2 Southside drug dealers in jail for a combined 140+ years. It is important to be witness to help put criminals behind bars.
Do not leave your keys in your car and do not leave an extra set of keys in your car console or glove box.
If you see someone stealing your car yell and cause a scenes; also call 911.
Do not physically confront a thief; call 911 and try to be calm and cool – document license number or physical description of person
Do not leave visible items of value or knick-knacks in your car. If your car is unlocked, people will still even your spare change.
Do not leave things of value next to a window in your home (ex: checks, credit cards, wallet, keys). 85% of crimes are because of the opportunity, so limit the visible “opportunities.”
Do not be paranoid about crime or criminals, just increase your awareness and protect yourself.
If you have a window navigation system, remove the suction holder when you leave your car. If possible try to get rid of the suction circle as well, as thieves will break in thinking it is in the glove compartment.
Be careful who you tell you are leaving for vacation or speaking about your trip around. Do not post all of your vacation details on Facebook or other social media.
When mailing checks, drop the check off at a post office or in a mail drop box instead of in your mailbox
Statewide metal theft laws were implemented 2weeks ago – convicted thieves cannot sell metal to scrap yards.
Consider installing a screen or cage for your AC unit to prevent theft of precious metals inside the unit.
Be cautious of giving out your credit card number both online and over the phone.
It is safer to use your credit card than your debit card to manage identity theft because of the repayment rules of many banks. Check your bank and credit card accounts in addition to credit score regularly to monitor for identity theft.
Just outside of the German Village boundaries on the 200 block of Reinhard, an At&T truck was caught transferring around 6K+ of copper wires into a regular truck. A bystander saw the suspicious activities and called the cops. The cops were able to catch the AT&T employee and his drug dealer (the other truck driver).
German Village is statistically not in a terrible crime zone.
January 29, 2015
8 police officers in attendance
7 people in attendance +1 child
Lunch by Kolache Republic
The monthly police lunch started with some questions from assembled residents. One resident was worried that a recent burglary was part of a sequence. Police said most burglars are kids or drug addicts. Burglaries do not tend to be gang related, and therefore are not usual part of a serial act.
Robberies in German Village seem like random acts with no pattern, police said, so just because your neighbor was broken into doesn’t mean you’re next.
Jerry shared the passing of 97-year-old Rosalee Polihronopolos. Jerry and the officers recalled 12 years ago when Rosalee was awarded the department’s highest civilian honor. She was in her home when someone broke in, so rather than panic, Rosalee quietly let herself out the back door, humming and shuffling the whole way. She knew that her home’s door locked from the inside – so once she was on the sidewalk near her home, she used a cell phone to call police and her assailant was locked inside!
Police said it is a great example of what you can do to protect yourself. If you hear someone breaking in be LOUD and make noise, this will most likely scare them away.
Upon a question, police said you can report unshoveled sidewalks to 311.
If someone is blocking your driveway, call the non-emergency police number at 645-4545. This kind of call ranks as low priority, so police come will come when they are available. When they arrive, the police will call a tow truck.
As is the drumbeat in luncheon after luncheon, IF YOU SEE SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, CALL THE POLICE AND PROVIDE A DESCRIPTION/LOCATION. Posting criminal or suspicious activity to CyberBlockWatch or Nextdoor is not remotely the same as reporting it to police. And no report is too small. Jerry shared a couple of recent arrest successes because people called police as soon as they saw something suspicious. Two people were arrested this month after someone witnessed them stealing packages from a home on Stewart Avenue. The witness followed the person in a car while describing the person to dispatch. Police caught the pair red-handed because of the quick thinking of a resident.
Jerry listed a number of crimes that were only reported online and never to police. In one, a resident caught the criminal in the act and reported to CyberBlockWatch a picture-perfect description of the criminal, but no police report was ever filed.
Always, always call police. Police are assigned more patrols of a neighborhood when call volumes rise, so if you want more cops on our streets, you have to report suspicious activity.
In response to the successful apprehension of the package thief, a reminder was made that packages can be delivered to the Meeting Haus.
Another tool -you can visit raidsonline.com to see crime near you.
Finally, someone brought in a card they had received about a sex offender moving into the Brewery District. Police said you can use https://sheriff.franklincountyohio.gov/services/sex-offender-registry/ any time to check your area, or to sign up to have emails sent if an offender registers near you.
Minutes – Dec. 18, 2014
– Lunch for officers was by The Olde Mohawk.
– Double check your car is locked. It is easy to get distracted while carrying groceries or talking on the cell phone.
– Be cautious of leaving bags, even if they are empty in your car.
– You can request a car speed monitoring trailer on 311.
– Be cognizant of how fast you are driving; remember German Village is a pedestrian friendly neighborhood.
– Package theft is common. Have your packages delivered to the German Village Society.
– Be careful who you tell about big purchases, you never know who may be listening.
– Be careful who you tell about your travel plans. People may target your home based upon your holiday travel.
– Make sure to verify your handyman or home repair service person is trustworthy. You can call the cops to check their background and you can ask neighbors about past experiences.
– If someone knocks on your door late at night and you are not expecting a visitor try to make lots of noise and say you are calling the police. Burglars will commonly knock on doors to see if anyone is home.
– If someone calls and asks for credit card information, do not give your information. There are people fake soliciting donations or are imposters of the IRS.
– Do not donate to charities via telemarketers – very little of that money goes directly to the charity. Send your check directly to the organization instead if you want to support their cause.
Minutes – Nov. 20, 2014
- Ohio has a statewide law preventing pawn shops and scrap yard to purchase from convicted thieves. There is no ordinance of this kind for second-hand stores. Take photographs of your gutters, decorative metal exterior elements, and other valuables, so that if they are ever stolen you can provide photographs to the detective in charge of your case and those photographs can be distributed to scrap yards and pawn shops.
- To avoid package theft, have your packages delivered to the Meeting Haus – 588 S.Third Street; this is a free service, but please remember to have your name is on the exterior of the box so that we know who to call.
- Make sure your garage door has a code system so that a generic button cannot be used to access your garage. Always make sure to have your garage door completely closed. If you are having issues with your garage door it could be an electrical issue.
- Be aware of your surroundings when you are leaving restaurants at night. Walk on well-lit streets and try to walk with friends.
- Leave porch lights on at night to create a safer pedestrian environment and to ensure your home is safer from possible burglaries. Consider installing motion sensor lights.
- Set up a Report It account. This account is only viewable by you, but is a great resource if you ever experience a home robbery or if a natural disaster harms your home.
- Be careful of who you hire to be your handyman. Make sure the person you hire to shovel your sidewalk, help with gardening, wash your windows, is not actually casing you/your house for a robbery. Some people will invest months and years of time to prepare for a theft. If you are uncertain as to whether or not the person you want to hire is safe, contact the police via the non-emergency number 645-4545.
- Police officers will visit your home to help you create a plan to make your home safer.
Minutes – Oct. 29, 2014
The meeting began at 6:36 p.m. and Jerry reminded the community what a rare relationship German Village Society has with police.
The department had at the table a lieutenant, the sergeant in charge of Fraud and ID Theft, a dispatcher, a community sergeant, community lieutenant, two officers and our Community Liaison Officer Scott Peck.
Jerry reminded folks of the size of the 11th Precinct, which goes from the river to Alum Creek and Livingston to I270.
Ofcr. Peck talked about raidsonline.com. It’s a website that allows anyone to track crime stats near any address. Type in an address, set the buffer to include the distance from that address you’d like to track stats (1/2-mile, 1 mile, etc.). You can also set the dates you want to see. For an example, Ofcr. Peck shared this chart showing the crimes within a half-mile of the Meeting Haus between Oct. 6-20, 2014.
You can have the site send you email alerts. There is also a cell-phone app for raidsonline.
Someone asked the difference between robbery and burglary. Robbery is a crime against a person, burglary on a property.
Ofcr. Peck said the best way to use this tool is to find out the facts about what kinds of crime are actually happening near you, as opposed to hearsay. The dispatcher said that the chart above shows a very safe neighborhood compared against the average.
Jerry suggested that each resident get an ultraviolet pen to mark all of their property with their driver’s license number. Pawn shops are required to look for those markings under a black light to look for that kind of marking.
Ofcr. Peck then talked about ReportIt, a place online that allows you to log your property with serial numbers and other identifying marks. ReportIt is free and stores up to 100 items per user. The link is reportit.leadsonline.com. Think particularly about logging the items, such are electronics and hand tools, that can be quickly pawned.
What’s the difference between 911 and 645-4545? The dispatcher said residents reporting are the most important link to community safety. She said suspicious activity should be reported – EVERY TIME – to 645-4545 for non-emergency. Having any and all information with as many details as possible is critical to officers’ ability to track and solve crime. The dispatcher said she and her colleagues keep a caller on the phone to continue to taking info, but at the same time they are electronically dispatching authorities as warranted. Residents participate best when they are good observers and report details. Suspect description is key to good policing. Don’t think you have to see someone commit a crime to call police – if you see something suspicious, REPORT IT.
The dispatcher also pointed out that German Village is the safest part of the 11th Precinct. Property crimes will always get trumped for officers’ attention if an assault, shooting, or other violent crime happens within the precinct – or within the city. Dispatch explained that officers are dispatched on a priority basis. There are eight officers patrolling on each of three shifts in the 11th. Dispatch explained that she may tell you on the phone she is sending someone and before the officer can get to your address to take a property crime report, there’s a shooting or a fatal traffic accident – and those officers will be diverted.
Property crimes under $3,000 in loss/damage with no known suspect are best filed on the online reporting (http://www.columbuspolice.org/dors/start-report.html) or phone reporting tools at 645-4545.
Sgt. Klein of fraud and forgery talked about how to protect yourself from fraud – people who might knock on the door and offer to do maintenance/odd jobs. He said many are criminals. They might be casing your home for theft. Or they might be running a job scheme to take money from you up front with promise to complete work later – and then they never come back. When you call in these kinds of incidents, don’t be afraid to use racial terms to make a full description for police.
ID theft is growing, Sgt. Klein said. Have a list of your credit card numbers at home with the toll-free number you would need to call if your card is stolen. Police generally do not investigate online theft. For those reports, call the three credit reporting bureaus to let them know your identity was stolen and they can track use of your online or credit profiles.
Question about people taking things out of the garbage. That is not a crime, Klein said. However, it is good idea not to put sensitive info in the trash – shred it or burn it.
Jerry introduced neighbor Dan Glasener, who shared a story about his bike being stolen and police helping him track it down within the same day. Dan said it inspired him to want to support the police lunches and be more active with the amazing relationship between GVS and 11th precinct. Executive Director Shiloh Todorov announced that Dan, and his business German Village Insurance, will be sponsoring the next two years’ worth of lunches for the police, as well as providing additional safety and security tips through a blog that will be updated between regular police lunches.
The resource comes at the perfect time, Todorov said, because the strategic planning research has showed that safety and security is a top priority for Villagers in terms of places the Society could focus its resources and attention. German Village Insurance’s support and partnerships is an excellent first step in responding to that community desire.