Raleigh police chief addresses increase in Glenwood South crime

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- The numbers are startling. Crime in Raleigh's Glenwood South neighborhood has steadily been increasing. So much so that Raleigh Police Chief Estella Patterson addressed the City Council with a report on recommendations to help curb the amount of crime in the area.

"I want to make Raleigh the safest city in the nation for residents and visitors to live, learn, work and play," Patterson said. "My desire is vibrancy over catastrophe."

Her comments came just days after six people were killed and several others shot during nightlife hours in Sacramento, California.

"I believe that this conversation is timely given what we have seen this past weekend in Sacramento in their entertainment district," she said.

From June 2021 to March 2022, Raleigh had 64 concealed-weapon violations in the Glenwood South district. From June 2019 to March 2020, there were 15 such violations.

Overall, during the aforementioned periods, total weapons violations were 76 and 16, respectively.

"The most glaring thing is the weapons violations," said Patterson. "We see an increase from people coming from outside of Raleigh. Over half of the people that we arrest do not come from this jurisdiction."

RPD said its biggest level of concern comes from an increase in calls of intoxicated people with handguns, assaults on bouncers, EMS workers, and other law enforcement officers, residents and visitors drinking alcohol in parked cars, and an increase in noise complaints made by neighboring residents.

"I can't stress it enough that I desire to work collectively," Patterson added. "The issues we are seeing at some point, I believe we may have a national incident. And I don't want that at any level and I don't think you want that at all."

Councilman-at-large Jonathan Melton said in the meeting that he supported the chief's recommendations.

"No one is going to want to go there if it is not safe. And so we have to make it safe," Melton said. "And I don't want us to be on the news reasons. I want Raleigh to be on the news for good reasons."

Mayor Mary Ann Baldwin inquired whether the City could require businesses to have magnetometers, or metal detectors, at the entrances of their businesses.

The city attorney responded by saying, "I would say that the police attorney has talked with me about this, and we are looking to kind of analyze what we can and cannot do in that arena."
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