Local News

Durham Mayor Talks About Reducing Crime

Posted October 15, 2007

— After two weekend slayings, Mayor Bill Bell is asking for the public's help in reducing crime in Durham.

"This is a solution that the community is going to have to get involved in. It is not going to be a solution law enforcement can solve by themselves," Bell said Monday.

Sunday night, police found Jeffery Wells dead inside a home on Walker Street. Investigators said they believe he was shot by a man who jumped from a sport utility vehicle.

On Saturday, an altercation at Northgate Mall led to the stabbing death of Keanan Odom. Xavier Moore, a suspect in the crime, surrendered to police Monday.

Bell asked Police Chief Jose Lopez to attend Monday's news conference.

"That is just the sad part about today's youth. They resolve too many issues with violence," Lopez said.

Bell is running for re-election and has faced criticism that he is too soft on crime. He insisted the news conference was not politically motivated, however.

"This is not doing damage control, all right? This is a fact. This is not the first time I have called a conference in reference to crime in the city," Bell said.

Anyone with information about the weekend slayings is asked to call Durham police at 919-560-4440.


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  • BUCKEYEnNC Oct 16, 2007

    Talk about crime!?!?! Durham has just about as bad a reputation as Fayetteville. I don't know about Durham, but Fayetteville has a revolving door when it comes to its jails. So where is the deterrent?!

  • blondton13 Oct 16, 2007

    I very much dislike Durham and unfortunately I live here. I felt safer driving through the streets of Compton, CA then I do walking around here in broad day light.


  • scorekeep Oct 16, 2007

    "Talk" about reducing crime? DO IT!

  • oneday8035 Oct 16, 2007

    What a major waste of air! I have lived in Durham all of my life and it has always been like the red headed step-child of the Triangle. The crime in Durham is not that much worse than Raleigh per capita, the media just loves to report it. Until we make it open season on gang members it's only going to get worse everywhere. Now, get down off your soap boxes for a minute and try to imagine a town without the Bloods, Crips etc. That's not going to happen because this isn't Mayberry but the system has got to get tougher. It's only going to get worse the more that "special interest groups" come to the rescue. Our leaders have to be the ones to take the first steps in riding our towns of these parasites but we have to vote for the ones that aren't puppets for the cause.

  • cjump Oct 16, 2007

    He has had his chance and failed to accomplish anything. Now it is time for someone else to try. Durham can't do any worse.

  • US VET Oct 16, 2007

    Durham officials have been talking about reducing crime every year that I can remember for at least the last 40 years. Nothing ever happens... just gets worse!!!

  • doodad Oct 16, 2007

    The root of a community's problem begins at the city hall's front door. If the city government can not mandate law and enforce it, then it is absurd that the city expects the community to handle it.

    Political officals are elected for a purpose. Just do you job.

    Durham city government and judicial system is way to soft on crime. THAT is the problem.

  • lornadoone Oct 16, 2007

    Bill Bell has been there far too long, and things have gotten worse in Durham. It's time for a serious change.

  • nghtstarz2 Oct 16, 2007

    Anyone remember the "Seagroves" case? This is a perfect example of what happens when a law abiding citizen tries to defend himself and his family. Most citizens a reacting to a situation and do not know all of the ins and outs of the law that would make their actions acceptable, under the law. I, for one, would attempt to shoot anyone who broke in my house, but I would probably go to jail. As far as Bell is concerned, a non-politically related press conference? Yeah, right. And Moore? What do you want to bet he either knew Odom and his "rep" or he knew one of the people Odom killed. From what I have seen, killing someone or having a scar from a shooting or stabbing is a badge of honor(?) in Durham. For the sake of my soapbox, the street police officers here walk a line of red tape and rules that make them look like they are testing for a DUI. How can they be effective when there are no rules for the criminals? And they want to go home at the end of their shift too.

  • Bartmansan Oct 16, 2007

    Kevinunc97; Nancy; 68polara; Kudos to you all on great comments. One of the biggest factors that is the root cause of Durhams problems is this; 11% turnout at the polls last Tuesday. Folks seem to be "TOO BUSY" to bother with exercising their right to do the "V" word. (I've had 2 comments already denied I guess that had the V word in them). The majority of people just don't make time to perform their civic duty. As far as Bell goes... I sure hope he is ousted in a couple of weeks. I attended 2 time Mayor Harry Rodenhizer's funeral on Sunday and Mr. Bell was not present. However, Mr. Stith was there sitting about 5 pews in front of me. I'll bet Mr. Stith never even knew Harry, but came to pay his respects anyway. Thats' the type of folks we need in public office.