What’s Your Crime Story?

We want to hear your crime stories, and your take on crime in and around the District of Columbia. Send us your thoughts at smccabe89@gmail.com and we’ll place them here in this column. Include the town or city that you live in.

Also, have a tip on crime news happening in your neighborhood? Spot a Most Wanted fugitive? Want to see an update on a cold case? Tell us your your crime story.

Contact Scott McCabe at smccabe89@gmail.com.

Mothers Against Murder Inc.

Aisha Jones-Peeples and Angelo Jones

The writer and her brother when they were barely toddlers.

My name is Aisha Jones-Peeples. I am the sister of Angelo Jones who was killed on Oct. 2 2010, in Clay Terrace a neighborhood where we grew up from birth. He was shot six times in his back and died at the hospital.

The person who committed this crime is locked up, serving time. The other person who gave the shooter the gun, I decided to do something about it. I am trying to organize my own company MAM Inc. (MOTHERS AGAINST MURDER Inc.) to help stop all the violence in my area.

I reside in Ward 7 and there is violence and murder constantly, and it must stop. It was heart-ranching for me to sit in the courtroom and listen to the 911 call and hear the gunfire as my brother was being shot down like an animal.

I feel that by reaching out to you that you can help me to bring my organization to the forefront. I also spoke with Mayor Vincent Gray personally and some others via email but not much was done.

Aisha Jones-Peeples, Washington, D.C.

What About The Children

So much has been said about Monday’s horrific Mass Shooting in Washington, D.C.’s Navy Yard, how we are de-sensitized (which we are) and how people have made DC a pariah of a city for all that is wrong in this nation.  But what about the Children, and how do we teach our children that mass shootings, are indeed not okay, just how many words and phrases can you use or repeat that are 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 year old friendly?

Luckily, my percipient 8 year-old has yet to ask about what happened at the Navy Yard, and frankly I don’t know what to tell him that I haven’t had to tell him when Aurora happened, or when Newtown happened.  Newtown was especially hard because I grew up in the town next door, and knew a number of people affected and a few that were killed.  The Navy Yard was no different, as my cousin just happened to not be in the building yet when the shooting started.

How as parents do we talk to our children about the grave tragedies, grave senseless tragedies that continue to occur?  How do we answer the question from the mouths of babes, ‘Mommy/Daddy, how come people can get guns like that? If he was a bad man why was he even allowed to have a gun?’ How do we inspire them to change what we have not been able too?

My son was born in 2004, before 2004 there were a total of 5 mass shootings that had 25 fatalities.  Since my son’s birth in 2004 there have been 24 mass shootings, 9 in the past year alone.  Why have we become so violent?  If you listen to the likes of Mitch McConnell and others it’s because of “video games” or some ass-hats in Congress actually believe theories that it is the breakdown of traditional families that has led to violence.

Americans have become de-sensitized, and I included, while privately praying for those lost at the Navy Yard, didn’t make a big deal out of it.  I was wrong, for the sake of my child, and all the children, I was wrong!  We need together as mothers AND Fathers, stand up and demand action, so that we are not faced with having to explain these senseless acts of violence to our children.  We cannot let politicians at every level of government off the hook, heck if Congress won’t pass stricter gun laws, go fight for them in the state capitols.  It is only the collective voices of all of us that can make sure that common sense gun control legislation is passed, and, not instead of, and, mental health laws are passed to get people the medical treatment they deserve.

Funny thing is, last night my 8-year-old told me they were learning how a bill became law, and how he was proud that his mother and father had taught him that already and that he was able to understand it and knew there were laws that both his parents worked very hard to pass.  He asked me if I thought Congress would vote to repeal the health care law, and what other bills we were working on.  I told him that we were concerned about the budget and so on.  But then, this astute young man asked me, ‘Dad, how come Congress hasn’t passed any laws lately, do they think everything is fine and there is no more work to do? ’ I responded with a hearty guffaw and a proud papa smile that he’s getting it, but then it hit me that I had no answer for him, that at least an 8-year-old could understand.

Face it folks, the NRA Driven Congress would rather repeal a health care law, and I will bet you somewhere a Tea Party Congressman has some sort of bill banning ‘ultra-violent video games.’  When our own elected officials (of either party) don’t spring into action, an in fact turn violence and tragedy into a political game, how are we supposed to explain that? The politicians have become desensitized, they have become more power hungry and they have become more beholden to special interests than ever before.  I for one have only one special interest, and that is that 8 year old boy.  How are we supposed to inspire our young children to change things, or are we just supposed to ask them to hope for change.

Chris Fleming