ANC Wrapup: Georgetown sees a worrying rise in crimes and crêpes
Tuesday night’s Advisory Neighborhood Commission meeting may be remembered by historians as the start of a new chapter in the Georgetown neighborhood crusade against late night takeout eateries. Plus, MPD reaffirms its commitment to increased patrols in the neighborhood in response to recent burglaries. Here’s the wrap:
MPD is on the job
Early in the meeting, Lieutenant John Hedgecock of the Metropolitan Police Department presented his report on crime in the Georgetown neighborhood.
“Throughout the Second District we are seeing a large increase in burglaries,” Hedgecock said.
He noted that there had been 12 burglaries in the past month, and that in one instance, four masked men had entered a house and robbed it. He also noted that in a recent robbery a neighborhood resident was beaten until he required hospitalization. Hedgecock said that MPD had partnered with the University and had increased uniform and nonuniform presence in the area.
Oh crêpe, not again
About an hour and 45 minutes into the meeting, a small M Street business, Crêpe Amour, presented a request for changes to its Alcoholic Beverage Control License. The request, presented by Sri Suku on behalf of his father, who owns the business, is necessary if the business is to go ahead with its plan to remain open past midnight.
Commissioners at first appeared open and willing to renegotiate the license for the recently-opened business, which is located only blocks away from the old Philly P’s. A representative from the Citizens Association of Georgetown said neighbors had good relations with the business. Commissioner Bill Starrels said he would discuss the issue with the owners and reach an agreement. Then Suku made a terrible mistake. In response to a question from Commissioner Ed Solomon about the number of chairs in his Crepe restaurant, Suku answered that there were only about four or five.
“It’s really just grab and go,” said Suku.
Almost instantly the atmosphere in the room changed. Audience members tensed up and hushed whispers could be heard about the crowd. The friendly smile worn by Starrels, who had helped bring down Philly P’s for acting as a “grab and go” establishment even though it was zoned as a restaurant, disappeared.
“Grab and go?” Solomon said. “You don’t want to say that around here.”
Suku finished his presentation, and it was agreed that he should plan on returning the next ANC meeting after negotiating a new ABC license. What wasn’t clear was how or whether the neighbors would support Suku’s plan to be open late. A tall neighbor drew Suku aside after his presentation.
“We’re watching this very close,” he said, explaining to Suku that the problems with Philly P’s had put the neighbors on edge about this kind of issue.
Safeway on its way
The ANC meeting also featured a presentation by Safeway workers on the soon-to-reopen Social Safeway. The Safeway is expected to open at 8 a.m. on May 6 and never close after that (it will operate 24/7). Safeway is planning on selling alcohol from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Photo from Flickr user davidsonscott15 under a Creative Commons license