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Raleigh police target repeat robbers and 'no snitch' street code

Posted May 6, 2008
Updated May 7, 2008

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— Raleigh Police Chief Harry Dolan acknowledges the rising number of robberies in the city and has several tactics planned to combat it.

Robberies are up more than 50 percent from last year, with 394 reported through Tuesday – or an average of a little more than three per day in 2008.

"We are very concerned about the armed robbery numbers," the chief said. "We've seen a trend over the last three years of increasing numbers of armed robberies, but particularly this year it's been even more troubling."

Police officers are taking special training to identify suspected thieves, and Dolan is seeking tougher penalties for those who are caught.

A Domino's Pizza on New Bern Avenue was among the latest targets. An armed robber got away with hundreds of dollars and smashed the tape from the store surveillance system before leaving, according to police reports.

In two recent cases, the criminals turned to homicide.

  • A cab driver was fatally stabbed April 21. Two people were charged in the case.
  • A convenience store manager was shot and killed April 10 during an early morning robbery attempt. No one has been arrested in the case.

Dolan cites several reasons for the increase and said he has plans to combat it.

"We get very concerned when we see that the people we're arresting are repeat offenders," the chief said.

Dolan said he worries that the "no snitch" attitude on the streets contributes to repeat offenders. He encouraged everyone in the city to report crime and to help police to identify suspects.

"By not telling, by not calling Crime Stoppers, they are aiding and abetting these individuals," he said.

The department is launching an initiative to improve security at convenience stores, which have been targeted in many of the robberies. The city also is trying to hire additional officers to put pressure on the robbers. The police force has 70 openings for officers.

"If I can fill more of those vacant positions it would certainly have an impact," Dolan said.

He promised that the training and enforcement plans will pay off.

"I believe strongly that we are going to see a dramatic decrease because of the men and women in this department," he said.

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  • ghwhitaker1_old May 7, 2008

    When most of us take a job we know what the pay is and what the hours are. If we can't live off the pay offered, we don't take the job.

  • ljcs357 May 7, 2008

    They should focus all the attention on the criminals and not worry about the "no snitch" street code. That's nothing more than a crutch because it is something that has been and will always be around.

  • ncwebguy May 7, 2008

    The criminals have peverted "snitching" from ratting out friends to reporting *any* known criminal activity. The prison of fear should be treated as the terrorist act it is.

    I don't want to live in a police state where people are guilty until proven innocent, which is why the "potential suspect training" is necessary.

    A tattle-tale is someone who tries to get someone else in trouble through trumped up (or made up) allegations of wrongdoing, or to make their crime seem less significant.

    Chief Dolan can fill the 70 positions or use the salaries and benefits set aside for those positions to increase the pay of the existing force, but can't do both. People at wal-mart wish they were paid more, but in taking the job, they agreed to the the terms of salaries and benefits as well.

  • SuperNupe May 7, 2008

    My Two Cents...

    In my eyes, you are only snitching, when you, yourself are also in trouble and you are trying to get out of trouble by "snitching" on the affiliated parties... IE... If a group of people rob a bank and 1 gets caught, he "rats out" or "snitches" on his people.... that's SNITCHING....

    This thing that they do on the streets is not "snitching", it's stupid, it's allowing crime to continue in your neighborhood. It's I'm scared to tell because of retaliation, and technically your no snitch.... Just a "taddle tell", but hey, no one likes them neither, right?

  • mojokitty May 7, 2008

    "We get very concerned when we see that the people we're arresting are repeat offenders," the chief said.

    “By not telling, by not calling Crime Stoppers, they are aiding and abetting these individuals," he said.

    .... who's aiding and abetting???

  • turdferguson May 7, 2008

    Everyone needs to make sure Pat McCrory gets elected NC Governor in November. He's placed crime at the top of his list.

  • wcnc May 7, 2008

    "I think you'll agree that most area LEO's are overworked, and underpaid, and our community leaders could give a hoot."

    YES!!! YES!!! You'll never hear me disagreeing with you on that!! Unfortunately we're in an area where the schools make the most noise and therefore get the most money. If the RPD Chief or if the Sheriff went to their respective boards and asked for millions MORE than the previous year for absolutely legit reasons, they'd be laughed out of there.....The powers that be don't seem to care.....

  • SouthernLady05 May 7, 2008

    wcnc, that's not at all what I was saying. Sorry it came off that way. I agree that both WCSO and RPD need higher salaries.

    I haven't heard of a retention prob at WC.. although there very well may be one.

    I think you'll agree that most area LEO's are overworked, and underpaid, and our community leaders could give a hoot.

  • wcnc May 7, 2008

    "Many RPD Officers work overtime to pay bills and just get by."

    Ok, that was a bad statement on my part. I just remember back a few years ago when one od RPD was shot while working off duty and the wife and I think another RPD were on the news talking about how necessary off duty was to their lives......That they wouldn't be able to go on vacation that year without it!! That's not a good soundbite to have in your mind!!! You need the people on the news saying that they work off duty to make ends meet and then people care.

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT May 7, 2008

    Does anyone know the average stay in jail or prison for an armed robbery conviction WITHOUT assault? If these guys disappeared from their family and friends for 5 or so years, without early parole, this would send a message. There is a way to send messages to future criminals, get TOUGH with sentencing and USE THE DEATH PENALTY a WHOLE LOT MORE!!!!!!!

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