Minutes from GNL Oct. 18th meeting
- Present: President Joan McEnery, Vice President Henry Conde, 2nd Vice President Paige Rose, Treasurer Ted Warren, Board Members Brian Smith, BarBara Murphy, Jay Lassiter,
- Absent: Irene Blake, Harry Worley, Paul Amodio
Due to his recent promotion, Master Police Officer Jason Gauthier announced he will be leaving the neigbhorhood and introduced Ghent’s new neighborhood police officer, MPO Laura A. Mason. Email: email@example.com
Cell phone number: 757-390-0405, remains the same as Officer Gauthier’s. President McEnery conveyed the GNL’s thanks for Officer Gauthier’s service and best wishes for future endeavors.
- Larceny (definition): theft of an item/theft of services (paid but no services rendered)
- Officer Mason: Re: Attempted October ___, 2010 abduction on Manteo/Maury AvenUe. Abductor wore gloves, put knife on back of female young woman who was walking from her parked car, told victim he “had been watching her”, victim “maced” suspect and he ran away. Suspect was a white male, thin build, approx 5’8″. Officer and k9 patrols failed to locate the suspect.
- Topic of assault on Oct. 9th 500 block Redgate at 10 a.m. brought up as crime report did not include this.
- Boardmember Murphy advised concerns with untimely and incomplete reporting. This was seconded by others in the membership. It was mentioned that crime reports seemed to mostly contain info on larcenies, stolen GPS, etc. when membership also wants “calls for service” (not just the “reports”) to include all assaults (except possible domestic), robberies and vandalism. It was felt that current reporting did not offer a good ‘comfort level” of information. Officer Gauthier advised that his reporting is based on what was available to him (“incidents”, which generated an actual report and NOT “calls for service”)and encouraged all to check the city’s Crimeview Mapping site. He further advised Officer Mason would address due to his outgoing status.
- Boardmember Ott seconded crime reporting discrepancy by pointing out the missing information regarding Mr. Chapman, the man who was witnessed masturbating in front of Ghent Montessori School.
- Additionally, the Ghent Sector Rep block captains could have helped spread the word about the Manteo/Maury Ave. “abductor” if police had communicated quickly with the GNL and/or used the reverse 911 system.
- EVMS announced its 24 hour,12 officer Police Department, led by EVMS Captain Mitchell, which officially began service this past July. The impetus for an on-campus police force was due to the incidents at Va Tech and elsewhere in the country. The EVMS Police Department has also requested expanded concurrent jurisdiction with NPD in areas surrounding the EVMS campus. They can write parking tickets in areas that currently overlap, Redgate, Duke, Brambleton. EVMS will be meeting with NPD in about a month to discuss expanded joint jurisdiction.
- EVMS police department will offer “RAD” (Rape/Aggression/Defense) classes for female staff, students and citizens this year. They also offer student/staff police escort and computer check in, along with bike, gold cart and SUV patrols.
Whitney Metzer, “SURVIVE NORFOLK” presentation: Event slated for Friday, Oct,22,2010 through portions of the Ghent neighborhood from 8:30 pm to 11 p.m.
Whitney advised this is a race/chase/tag game where “runners” would try to cross 4 checkpoints and finish the course without being tagged by a “zombie”. 6,400 had currently indicated their willingness to participate on the game’s FACEBOOK page. However, she wanted to keep the players at a more manageable number under 2,000. Whitney advised she thought it would just be her friends and their friends, but the event morphed into epic numbers with the internet. Entry fee proceeds to also benefit Hope House, Hermitage Foundation and D’Art Center. Five Ghent bars are also holding special “after parties”: The Boot, Pos Soul, New Belmont , San Antonio Sam’s and Red Dog Saloon. Whitney contacted the City of Norfolk and was also in the process of securing off duty police officers as well as a Special Exception permit. Sixty game volunteers, some on foot and bike, would oversee the game to ensure safety for the neighborhood and all players. She stressed that she wanted this to be a positive event for all. She advised this game is also played in other major cities: D.C., Raleigh, Chicago, LA and San Francisco. Participants will be advised to stay on streets/sidewalks and not to trespass onto resident/business properties during the game. Players would also need to sign guidelines and a waiver for liability release. There will be no drinking or any other illicit activities. Everyone must be at least 18 years of age.
- Street Closures: A portion of Colonial Ave would be closed from 8 pm – 9:30 pm and 20th Street to Spotswood. Four checkpoints, spread throughout the playing area, would be monitiored.
- Membership expressed concern and surprise that info and opportunity for feedback was not made available sooner, especially considering this event would temporarily shut down a portion of a major thoroughfare
- As Whitney had already met with the City and the City had approved the event to move forward, the GNL wished her the best and trusted the City would endeavor to ensure the safety of all, players and residents, during the game. The GNL urged Whitney to forward an informational flier so that the GNL could further inform its membership.
NORCAP -Amy Crofoot
“Norfolk Caring Parents”, was developed from parents’ concerns regarding the expansion and relocation of the Norfolk Community Services Board. News of this expansion and relocation was “stumbled upon” and was not actively advertised, so parents and concerned family-oriented citizens sought to develop a platform to educate the neighborhood and increase awareness of issues that compromise children and family safety.
Amy stated concerns with lack of cost benefit analysis of the move into Ghent. The NCSB recently completed substantial improvements to their Tidewater Drive location, at the City’s expense, that would now be wasted with another move. Other concerns:
Data reporting: shows that more than 99% of NCSB clients do not reside in the Ghent, or nearby Ghent zip codes. Per NCSB documents, Ghent is classified as extending from Waterside Drive to the Granby Street bridge.
Duplication of area services: There are currently 14 regional crisis centers statewide, so questions arise as it seems services are being duplicated for duplicate populations. The City needs more oversight and accountability with this matter as it is a City subsidized entity.
A better proposed solution is to incorporate or move services to Sentara Leigh, which offers more convenient transportation possibilities for clients and does not impinge on surrounding neighborhoods. Sentara Leigh is commencing a new building and that would be the ideal time to align with the NCSB mission. Another solution is to speak with state representatives and Governor McDonnell about creating neighborhood “buffer zones”.
- 1st Vice President Henry Conde announced that 5 new board members had recently been added to the NCSB to change some of the dynamics. The goal is to accomplish the CSB mission without harm. Henry added currently there are 3 pending investigations, one at the state, federal and local level and that the move is on hold until the City Manager receives additional information and a task force has been created to help address this issue.
- Amy advised the CSB is continuing to look at additional sites in Ghent (near the ABC store), so does not appear to be at a full stop.
In closing, Amy stated that Mr. Chapman (who was witnessed masturbating in front of Ghent Montessori School) is awaiting a psch eval before facing trial and has a history of violent and criminal mental illness. He was in state care and custody prior to his release. He would have also been released after this last incident if he had indicated he had a residence. These are things to be aware of during discussions of expanded crisis stabilization units into our Ghent neighborhood.
Ghent 50th Anniversary – Joan McEnery
Upcoming next year, will be concurrent with national celebration of the end of the War of 1812, and signing the Treaty of Ghent (which gives our neighborhood its name). Discussed possibility of a two year party. Membership brought up possibility of park naming opportunity. John Rhamstine to research. Another possibility is a Living Legacy Tree in honor of these two events, with a possible kick off in December to dovetail with the Chrysler. John Rhamstine to research. A special newsletter or series was also discussed. Secretary Blake and member Susanne Williams to discuss. 2012 Bicentenial with fireworks, suggested to end at the Hague, PAUL AMODIO assisgned to research.
Read Full Post »