Tuesday, November 25, 2014

31 felons, 20 guns off the streets in police op

Posted By on Tue, Nov 25, 2014 at 12:47 PM

One of the initiatives by the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department to address recent crime created 35 arrests and recovered nine weapons this weekend.

The Violent Crime Task Force conducted 15 felony arrests, another 20 for misdemeanors and issued 75 traffic citations.

"Combined with a 10-day operation in October, the Task Force now has conducted 31 felony arrests, 47 misdemeanor arrests and 124 traffic citations and recovered 20 firearms as well as a stolen vehicle. Officers also stopped and interviewed 249 individuals," a police spokesperson says.

Six of the 20 weapons recovered were identified as stolen. The task force also participated in a search for a suspect after a crash on Montgomery Cross Road Friday night that led to the recovery of three additional weapons.

The objective of the task force, led by Southside Precinct Lt. Ashley Brown, "is to augment regular patrols in areas where criminal activity has increased or where analysts predict it might increase. Officers in both marked patrol cars and unmarked undercover cars are deployed. It is one of a host of initiatives recently begun by the department, along with Code Blue and the Quick Reaction Task Force, as well as others."

“Experience tells us that people involved in violent crimes usually participate in a myriad of offenses and will continue their acts of violence until arrested,” said Police Chief Joseph H. Lumpkin Sr. “We can best protect our community by getting criminals off the streets, hopefully before their second, third and fourth crimes are committed. I am proud of the way this unit has approached this mission. With the assistance of the public, we can prevent crime.”

The unit will continue to patrol on specific nights during the holiday shopping season where crime traditionally increases.

“These officers have identified specific individuals and certain locations on which to focus in search of violent offenders,” said Maj. Richard Zapal, Patrol North Commander. “They are using intelligence-led policing tactics to direct their efforts. So far, we are impressed with the results.”

The task force has made seven arrests for possession of cocaine, five for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and five on outstanding felony warrants (one suspect had nine warrants for possession of cocaine and one was a shooting suspect.) Four were arrested for possession of marijuana, three for fleeing to elude police, and one each for possession of methamphetamine, possession of heroin, possession of prescription pills, felony probation violation, felony obstruction, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony and theft by receiving stolen property (firearm.)

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Monday, November 24, 2014

Southern Culture On The Skids to play Savannah Stopover

Posted By on Mon, Nov 24, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Savannah Stopover Music Festival announced today that Southern Culture On The Skids will headline its 5th anniversary celebration on opening night of the festival, Thursday, March 5. The North Carolina band has not played Savannah since 2000.

The event will take place from 6-9pm outside at Trustees Garden located at 10 E. Broad St. in Savannah.

Food will play a central part in the night’s festivities, and festival organizers confirmed that Southern food truck options are in the works.  Many of the bands most beloved songs pay homage to southern staples like Fried Chicken, Banana Pudding, Captain’s Wafers and “Too Much Pork For Just One Fork”.

Festival founder Kayne Lanahan says, “We wanted to do something to celebrate Savannah Stopover turning 5, but we didn’t want to take it too seriously. We just want it to be insanely fun, Southern and uniquely Savannah.”

Admission to the event is included in both the 3-day festival pass as well as the single day pass for Thursday, March 5, which grants access to all concer ts Thursday night.

Event-only tickets are available for $20. Tickets are on sale now at Ticketfly.

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Sunday, November 23, 2014

12-year-old shot and killed during party

Posted By on Sun, Nov 23, 2014 at 10:24 PM

Detectives of the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department are sorting out details and are seeking information on the fatal shooting of a teenager Saturday night.

Keith Passmore, 12, of the 5600 block of Lafitte Drive, died at Memorial University Medical Center after being shot in the 2200 block of Vicksburg Drive about 10:15 p.m.

"Investigators believe this shooting happened at a party where approximately 30 people were in attendance," a police spokesman says. "Investigators are asking that anyone in attendance at the party or anyone that has information regarding the shooting contact the Homicide unit at (912) 651-6728.

Anyone with information on the case also can call Crimestoppers at (912) 234-2020 or text CRIMES (274637) using the keyword CSTOP2020. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward. A confidential Tip Line also is open directly to investigators at (912) 525-3124.

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Friday, November 21, 2014

Connect editor in Georgia Public Broadcasting segment

Posted By on Fri, Nov 21, 2014 at 4:13 PM

Connect Savannah Editor in Chief Jim Morekis joined South University Criminal Justice Professor Tom Cannon this morning in a statewide interview on Georgia Public Broadcasting's 'On Second Thought." They talked about the rash of shootings in Savannah, amid a backdrop of disarray in the Savannah/Chatham Metro Police Department, and possible solutions.

Listen to the full audio here.

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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Another child shot; man sought after domestic dispute

Posted By on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 at 5:17 PM

Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police are seeking a Savannah man after a six-year-old girl was shot in a domestic dispute this morning.

Brandon Maurice Stewart, 20, is being sought "after detectives determined the child was shot during a domestic dispute between him and the child’s mother," a police  spokesman says.

Shauneequa Jones, 22, had called police to Wheaton Street near East Broad Street about 8:44 a.m. Thursday. She reported "she was walking her daughter to school and heard a noise before her daughter complained and she discovered the child had been shot. Police searched their apartment nearby on Wilder Street and discovered the shooting actually took place there," police say.

While detectives continued their investigation into the shooting, Police Chief Joseph Lumpkin issued a warning for adults who keep weapons in a residence with children and those who knowingly live with individuals legally prohibited from possessing weapons.

“The Second Amendment right to bear arms is accompanied by the responsibility to use due care,” he said. “This is particularly important in situations where children are present. Parents also should be wary of living with felons possessing firearms. Convicted felons have forfeited the right to bear arms and the fact that they have weapons should be a strong indication that they cannot be trusted, particularly with your child’s safety. Anyone who knows of such a situation should report it to police immediately.”

Anyone with information on Stewart’s location is asked to call 911. They also can call Crimestoppers at (912) 234-2020 or text CRIMES (274637) using the keyword CSTOP2020. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

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Chief Lumpkin's statements on toddler's murder

Posted By on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Wednesday afternoon, new Savannah/Chatham Metro Police Chief Jack Lumpkin issued the following statement on the shooting death of two-year-old Kiaja Smalls, when her Southside apartment was apparently intentionally targeted in a driveby shooting:

Regrettably, the fatal shooting of a 2-year-old child last night exemplifies our worst fears about the evolving criminal activities we have been seeing in our community – the very real possibility of innocent victims being injured. Her death is tragic and horrific for this community and our police department.

I can think of no one more innocent than a 2-year-old girl peacefully sleeping in her family’s living room.

This is an active investigation and our first priority is to protect that investigation and bring the perpetrators to justice. I pray our objective is shared by this community. So the information we release will be guarded. The child, Miss Smalls, was struck by two of the bullets fired into the family’s apartment from close proximity. There is no doubt that this specific apartment was targeted. Other than that and the information already released by the department, we will not be able to comment further on the specifics of this case.

BUT, this case needs to become the catalyst to a change in attitude towards crime for much of our community. We have talked about the need for this community — ALL members of this community – to work together to make us all safer. I have no doubt that there are people in our neighborhoods that know who committed this heinous crime and why.

We know some people do not come forward because they are involved in criminal activity themselves.

Some do not come forward because they are associated by family or other means to those who commit crimes.

And others do not come forward because they fear retribution from those who are committing these crimes.

It is the latter two groups I want to address first: If you are not working with us to combat this criminal activity, you are enabling, empowering and even encouraging the criminals through your silence! Experience tells us that a very small segment of a community is committing these crimes. But that small element is holding the rest of us hostage! They cannot threaten all of us.

We need members of our community to come forward: If you know something – or even THINK you know something – SAY Something! We are constantly and consistently encouraging all citizens to call us – either through CrimeStoppers or the confidential detective line or even calling 911!

Recently, many of our community’s faith based leaders have offered to take information from residents and relay it to police. Please take advantage of these faith leaders’ offer and USE them! We should not allow another innocent person to be traumatized, injured or killed due to our inactions.

Talk to us! Your police department is doing all it can but it cannot do it alone. Your officers have been working overtime, double time and on special units for months. They will relentlessly continue to do so to make us all safer.

Today, I reached out to state and federal authorities to ask if they can provide more help than they already do. This is not because our officers are not doing all they can or do not have the competence to police this community – it is simply a matter of numbers. Every police department needs more resources and we all pay state and federal taxes. Those state and federal agencies have a history of assisting when requested and we are awaiting word of what they can do to help us. I feel certain they will respond positively.

In the meantime, it is up to us the police and you – the citizenry. The citizens and the police of this community have the resources we need to control this activity IF … IF … IF we work together. I am asking you as citizens, to begin assisting and helping us maintain your public safety.

Ladies and gentlemen, remember, every child in our community should have the right to an environment absent illegal gun acts, gangs and drug violence.

If you won’t do it for yourselves, please do it for your children.

Thank you.

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Boy killed when struck by SUV

Posted By on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 at 11:43 AM

Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police are investigating the death of an 11-year-old boy who died after being struck by an SUV Wednesday morning.

Joshua Powell of a Green Oak Drive address was pronounced dead at Memorial University Medical Center after he was struck by a 2013 Dodge Durango about 8:20 a.m.

Officers with the Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT) determined he ran into the roadway on Quacco Road near Highland Woods Drive and into the path of the SUV driven by a 26-year-old Savannah woman.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Child killed when apartment building sprayed with bullets

Posted By on Wed, Nov 19, 2014 at 10:38 AM

Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police are investigating the shooting death of a two-year-old child inside an apartment late Tuesday night.

The child was transported from the Hampstead Oaks Apartments on the 200 block of Hampstead Avenue to Memorial University Medical Center.

Central Precinct Patrol officers responding to a shots fired call were advised that the child had been injured at 11:02 p.m.. The apartment appeared to have been targeted with shots fired from outside the unit.

Detectives continue to investigate. Anyone with information on the case is asked to call Crimestoppers at (912) 234-2020 or text CRIMES (274637) using the keyword CSTOP2020. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Harry Connick Jr tix go on sale Friday

Posted By on Tue, Nov 18, 2014 at 1:04 PM

Harry Connick Jr. performs Thursday, Feb. 5, at the Johnny Mercer Theatre, touring in support of his recent release Every Man Should Know.

Tix to the performance go on sale this Friday at 10 a.m. Go online at etix.com or savannahcivic.com, or in person at the Civic Center Box Office.

Two more shootings

Posted By on Tue, Nov 18, 2014 at 12:20 PM

Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police are investigating gunshot injuries to two males who arrived at a hospital by private vehicle about the same time Monday afternoon.

A 32-year-old male arrived at Memorial University Medical Center about 5:10 p.m. and reported he had been shot in a robbery attempt on the 300 block of Stacie Court on Savannah’s southside.

A 20-year-old male reported "he was looking at a pistol when it fired and struck him."

Both injuries were non-life threatening. Metro Violent Crimes detectives continue to investigate both events.

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