2nd PDAC stresses importance of reporting crimes

Award win­ners: Pic­tured are (from left) Capt. Frank Palumbo, Dani­elle Walsh, Ry­an Laskowski and Com­munity Re­la­tions Of­ficer Di­anne Murphy.

Squeak. Go ahead. Do it again.

You know the old say­ing: The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

It’s true, and per­haps nev­er more so than when it comes to re­port­ing crimes on the city’s 911 sys­tem. Res­id­ents who call 911 see more cops in their neigh­bor­hoods, po­lice com­mand­ers re­peatedly have said.

Speak­ing to mem­bers of the 2nd Po­lice Dis­trict Ad­vis­ory Coun­cil last week, Capt. Frank Palumbo, Sgt. Frank Barclay and Com­munity Re­la­tions Of­ficer Di­anne Murphy all stressed how im­port­ant it is to call 911 to re­port crimes. And keep call­ing, they said.

Every call gets logged. The Po­lice De­part­ment knows where those calls ori­gin­ate.

Barclay told mem­bers at their Jan. 14 ses­sion at the Phil­adelphia Prot­est­ant Home that new cops com­ing out of the Po­lice Academy get as­signed to dis­tricts out­side the North­east.

“Be­cause that’s where the 911 calls are,” he said.

Some mem­bers said they were re­luct­ant to call 911 to tell dis­patch­ers about what might be con­sidered tri­fling mat­ters, but Palumbo, Barclay and Murphy urged them to put those con­cerns aside.

“There’s no such thing as something you can’t call 911 about,” the cap­tain said.

Over the past few years, po­lice cap­tains ad­dress­ing North­east com­munity groups have stressed that call­ing in crimes, even sus­pi­cious be­ha­vi­or, helps po­lice al­loc­ate man­power. Calls do get pri­or­it­ized, of­ficers have said, so they are not answered on a first-call-first-served basis.

Don’t as­sume, as some do, that some­body else already has called 911, po­lice have said.


Mem­bers honored Dani­elle Walsh and Ry­an Laskowski as Of­ficers of the Month for an ar­rest they made after they checked out a double-parked car on the 500 block of Carv­er Street in early Septem­ber.

The two of­ficers no­ticed a man com­ing out of a house they knew to be va­cant and stopped him. Murphy said the man told the cops he had been work­ing in the house, clean­ing pipes. The of­ficers de­tained the man and found his story didn’t check out, Murphy said. The man had nu­mer­ous keys and lists of oth­er va­cant prop­er­ties, Murphy said. 

In­side the home, she con­tin­ued, the two of­ficers found cop­per pipes that had been re­moved. They ar­res­ted Wil­li­am Law, 35, who will go on tri­al next month on burg­lary and re­lated charges.

Thieves can sell scrap cop­per, po­lice have said, and that fact makes empty build­ings at­tract­ive tar­gets for them. They’ll steal cop­per wa­ter pipes, cop­per from air con­di­tion­ing units and cop­per down­spouts.

PDAC mem­bers learned of oth­er crimes and po­lice activ­it­ies:

— A wo­man was at­tacked in her home on the 2100 block of St. Vin­cent Street by a man who came to her door to dis­cuss his re­li­gious be­liefs. When the wo­man told the man she was not in­ter­ested, he punched her in face and walked away. Po­lice de­scribe him as a slender black man with a light com­plex­ion, 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet tall, and wear­ing a dark blue suit.

— The Wawa con­veni­ence store at Bustleton and the Boulevard has been robbed so many times in the wee morn­ing hours that the com­pany has de­cided to scrap its overnight shift in­def­in­itely, Palumbo said.

The cap­tain said he had of­ficers sta­tioned out­side the place and the first day they were off, the store was robbed again. One mem­ber asked the cap­tain if put­ting an un­der­cov­er of­ficer in the store could be con­sidered, but the cap­tain said such a move might un­in­ten­tion­ally spark a gun battle in the store.

Palumbo sus­pects the rob­ber is very fa­mil­i­ar with what hap­pens at the store.

“He lives close by,” the cap­tain said of the rob­ber. “We think it’s the same guy in all four in­cid­ents.”

— There is a group of hood­lums that have been re­spons­ible for a shoot­ing, at­temp­ted car­jack­ing, burg­lar­ies and oth­er crimes in Lawn­crest, Palumbo said. “The Lawn­crest Boys” seem to op­er­ate in three blocks in all dir­ec­tions from the Lawn­crest Re­cre­ation Cen­ter. “They do rob­ber­ies, sell drugs, do shoot­ings oc­ca­sion­ally.”

Lynn Genetti, the PDAC’s chair­wo­man, said the or­gan­iz­a­tion’s Of­ficers Ap­pre­ci­ation Day bar­be­cue will be held June 7 at the dis­trict at Har­bison and Levick. She said the PDAC tent­at­ively has moved its an­nu­al Com­munity Day to Sept. 13. The event had been held in May, but Genetti said it of­ten con­flic­ted with May­fair’s May Day.

The PDAC’s next meet­ing will be held 7 p.m. on Feb. 11 at the Phil­adelphia Prot­est­ant Home, 6500 Tabor Ave. ••

You can reach at jloftus@bsmphilly.com.

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