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Keep an eye on your belongings when you’re out and about. Thieves have been making off with unguarded valuables lately. Some examples from recent police reports:
• On February 8, a shopper left her purse unattended in a cart in the parking garage at Safeway (1855 Wisconsin Ave.). She later discovered that she was missing $300 in cash, several credit cards, and a New Jersey driver’s license.
• On January 28, a shopper left her purse unattended in a cart at Whole Foods (2323 Wisconsin Ave.). A “suspicious female” in her 60s tried to take the cart and then apologized. Shortly afterward, the shopper discovered that her wallet was missing.
• On February 7, a driver stopped to fuel her Nissan SUV at the Washingtonian Gas Station (2450 Wisconsin Ave.). A black Hyundai with tinted windows and temporary tags pulled up next to her, and a man got out, opened her SUV’s rear door, and stole a leather bag containing a wallet, a sweater, a Pennsylvania driver’s license, and $15 in coins. The Hyundai then fled southbound on 37th Street.
• On February 12, a man at Georgetown Plaza (2233 Wisconsin Ave.), left his wallet and iPhone in an unlocked locker before taking a class. When he returned, he noticed the items were gone. Someone later tried to use one of his credit cards to charge $250 at a Safeway in Arlington, Virginia.
• On January 12, a woman at CorePower Yoga (2233 Wisconsin Ave.) found that her silver necklace, black leather boots, and iPhone had been stolen from a community storage area while she took a yoga class.

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Construction started last week on a Wisconsin Avenue facelift that has raised ire over its potential long-term impact. The $3.8 million project, slated for completion by the end of September, will upgrade underground electrical service; replace large “cobra” style streetlights with traditional “Washington globe” style lights; and widen two narrow sidewalks—one by the Sunoco gas station (2450 Wisconsin Ave.) and the other by Holy Rood Cemetery (2126 Wisconsin Ave.)—among other changes. Plans for the project are posted on Advisory Neighborhood Commission 3B’s website.

Almost no one is opposed to electrical upgrades or more appealing streetlights. The controversial part of the project is a plan to restripe the street, reducing the number of through lanes and adding a painted median with breaks for left turns. District Department of Transportation officials say the changes will improve traffic flow, but neighbors worry that gridlock—first from the construction and then from the reduction in lanes—will send spillover traffic down Glover Park’s residential streets, particularly 37th Street, an already busy ambulance route with very few safe crossings. If that happens, DDOT officials say, the painted changes can be reversed.

Scores of Glover Parkers turned out last week for a community meeting on the project, and the Glover Park Yahoo! newsgroup has been roiled by comments in protest. Now, some Glover Parkers are petitioning DDOT for improvements to pedestrian safety on 37th Street, including a planned but as-yet-unfunded reconfiguration of the problematic intersection at 37th and Tunlaw. Meanwhile, others are reportedly organizing to convince DDOT not to paint the median on Wisconsin Ave., even as a trial.

ANC 3B will provide an update on the streetscape project at its April 12 meeting.

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From the May 2011 edition of the Glover Park Gazette:

Spring saw a spate of shoplifting incidents in Glover Park, according to police reports. On March 28 at 2:30 p.m., a man entered Theodore’s (2233 Wisconsin Ave.), grabbed a rabbit-fur throw, and left through the side exit. Then on April 5 at 10:20 a.m., a man entered Whole Foods (2323 Wisconsin Ave.) and picked up multiple containers of body wash and vitamin pills, as well as a DVD. He shoved the merchandise down the front of his pants and left the store, traveling southbound on Wisconsin Ave. Finally, on April 8 at 5 p.m., four men entered the Washingtonian gas station (2450 Wisconsin Ave.) and loitered, becoming disorderly. When a clerk asked them to leave, they stole a Bic lighter and Orbit chewing gum before fleeing southbound on Wisconsin Ave. Police have no suspects in any of these incidents, according to the reports.

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From recent police incident reports (all names are made up):

April 5, 4:30 p.m.
2323 Wisconsin Avenue
Pickpocket

Sally was shopping in Whole Foods, wearing her shoulder bag. She later discovered that her wallet was missing.


April 10, 11:50 p.m.
Near 2505 Wisconsin Avenue
Assault with intent to rob

Rachel, a guest of the Savoy Suites Hotel, was approached by Bob, who tugged on her purse, grabbed her left arm, and said, “Give me your pocketbook.”

Rachel responded, “Fuck you,” at which point Bob punched her in the jaw, where she’d recently had surgery, dislocating it. He then fled the scene without her purse.

Rachel returned to her hotel room, called her daughter, and passed out.


April 11, 2 p.m.
Wisconsin Avenue and Calvert Street
Assault on a police officer

Bill was walking south on Wisconsin Avenue when Jim walked up to him, said, “Get out of the way, faggot,” and kicked him in the back of his right leg.

Jim then approached Sue, who was accompanied by Sam, and asked, “Do you want some of this?” Sue got into the passenger side of her vehicle and closed the door.

Jim then approached Sam, who had gotten into the driver’s side of the vehicle, and asked, “Do you want some of this?” Sam identified himself as a police officer and showed Jim his badge.

Jim balled up his fists and took a fighting stance, and Sam told him to back down. Sam called for backup and held Jim until reinforcements arrived.

Sam suffered lacerations and abrasions but refused medical assistance at the scene. Jim suffered abrasions and was taken to Sibley Hospital for treatment, then transported to the Second District. He was charged with assaulting a police officer.


April 21, 1:30 p.m.
2450 Wisconsin Avenue
Robbery by fear

Ralph entered the gas station wearing a black ski mask, placed his hand in his pocket, and told Fritz, the cashier, “Give me the money.” Fritz, who feared Ralph had a weapon, backed away.

Ralph then opened the cash drawers for two registers and stole $300. He also stole $150 and a cell phone from Fritz.

Ralph then fled, heading west on Calvert Street. Fritz chased him. He didn’t catch Ralph, but he saw Ralph drop cash on the ground. Fritz picked up the cash and put it in his pocket. Ralph was last seen headed northbound on Tunlaw.


April 21, 8:00 p.m.
2323 Wisconsin Avenue
Pickpocket

Gretchen was shopping at Whole Foods, with her open purse in her shopping cart. She turned away from the cart. When she later went to pay, her wallet was missing.

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