Presentations from Lawrenceville-Wide Public Safety Meeting 4/16/2019

The April Lawrenceville-Wide Public Safety Meeting was held on 4/16/2019 at the Lawrenceville branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Please see below for the presentations:

  1. Presentation from Pittsburgh Police Sex Assault & Family Crisis Unit
  2. Responding to Trauma – Pittsburgh Action Against Rape
  3. Crime Report for Q1 of 2019 – Zone 2 Police
  4. Butler Street Design Guidelines – Studio for Spatial Practice

Block watches will resume in May and June and the next Lawrenceville-Wide Public Safety Meeting will be held on 7/16/2019 at 6:30 p.m. at the Lawrenceville branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, focusing on traffic calming and mobility safety.

 

Recap from Community Meeting with the FBI

On Monday, January 28th, Lawrenceville United hosted the FBI units working on hate crimes and domestic terrorism for a presentation on hate crimes and hate incidents. Over 80 people attended. The full presentation is available HERE. Special thanks to the FBI, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Zone 2, and all those who attended.

Some key takeaways:

  • Federal hate crime laws protect the following groups: race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, gender, and gender identity.
  • Hate crimes and hate incidents are on the rise nationally. Lawrenceville has seen about a dozen hate crimes or hate incidents in the past 6 months, which has been a disturbing new trend.
  • We all must be PROACTIVE and PREVENTIVE in addressing hate. We can’t prosecute our way out of the problem. Recognizing the behavioral indicators of extremist and hate-based violence, and DOING something, is key to preventing violence.
  • While the First Amendment protects many displays of offensive and hateful speech, a “hate incident,” while not a crime, is still useful to the FBI as it can be an important piece of the puzzle for their intelligence, intervention, and prevention. Hate incidents should be reported. The First Amendment is not extended to criminal acts based on intolerance, purposefully intimidating speech, actions which can be interpreted by a reasonable person to be a serious intent to cause harm, or the planning/preparation/commission/facilitation of violence. A true threat puts the recipient in fear of bodily harm.
  • The FBI can’t “surf” for offensive or hateful speech or materials, but if they receive a tip from the community about it, they have the ability to look into it, which is another reason why tips are important.
  • Residents can report to the FBI through 412-432-4000 or www.fbi.gov/tips. The FBI also encourages residents to use resources like Lawrenceville United (412.802.7220 or info@LUnited.org) to relay information to the FBI if you wish to remain anonymous or don’t want to contact the FBI directly.
  • All of the white supremacist flyers seen around the neighborhood haven’t had permission of the property owners to be hung there, in violation of city ordinance. If you come across these flyers, please document it and report to Lawrenceville United.

If you have any questions or suggestions for other ways that LU can address this trend, please contact us at 412-802-7220 or info@LUnited.org.

Lawrenceville Wide Public Safety Meeting 1/15/2019

LU hosted our first Lawrenceville-wide Public Safety Meeting on Tuesday 1/15/2019 at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – Lawrenceville branch. Big thanks to the library for hosting, Dr. Heath Johnson from Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, Zone 2 Police’s Commander Zett, Officer Davis, and Det. Malloy, Public Safety Director Hissrich and Dan Shak, as well as the offices of Councilwoman Gross, Rep. Innamorato, and Rep. Ravenstahl.

In case you missed the meeting, please see the materials below:

Meeting Notes

Pittsburgh Police Presentation on 2018 Crime Trends

Dept. of Public Safety Presentation on Security Cameras

Your TL;DR version….

The bad news: total crimes are up from last year, driven largely by an increase in property crimes — mainly thefts from auto and burglaries.

The good news: violent crimes continued to decrease, 5 year averages for total crimes are down, Lawrenceville remains safe compared to Zone 2 and the City of Pittsburgh, and 12 public safety cameras are going up around Lawrenceville in the next couple weeks to deter and solve crime.

Regularly scheduled block watches will resume in February and March. Our next quarterly public safety meeting will be held in April. Please input on what content you’d like to see the April meeting cover to info@LUnited.org or call 412-802-7220.

Materials from 9th Ward Block Watch on 8/21/2018

In case you missed the 9th Ward Block Watch on 8/21/2018, here are the materials that were shared:

Join us on 9/18/2018 at 6:30 p.m. at St. Mary’s Lyceum for the next 9th Ward Block Watch.

Update on Burglary Uptick

Lawrenceville has seen a recent uptick in burglaries of both residences and businesses from April 2018 to present, particularly concentrated in Lower Lawrenceville and along Butler Street.

 

Police seeking help identifying suspects

Camera footage of suspects has been collected (see below) and residents are encouraged to call 911 with any information on the identity of these suspects, or if residents see these individuals.

Photo 1: Suspect from Industry burglary, picture shared by Zone 2 Police.

 

Video 1: Camera footage of individual seen taking (and later returning) item from private property on 4/29/2017, the same night as a number of burglaries across Lower Lawrenceville.

 

Video 2: Camera footage of individual appearing to “case” homes in Lawrencville on 5/23/2018, the same night that various burglaries occurred on this block and across Lower Lawrenceville.

 

Preventive Measures

Zone 2 Police encourage all residents to review this document on preventive measures to avoid burglaries and prevent being an “easy target.”

 

Have a camera? Add your location to our database.

LU shares this database with Zone 2 Police so that they can reach out if seeking footage for a nearby incident. You can voluntarily add your location through this Google Form, calling us at 412-802-7220, or emailing us at info@LUnited.org.

 

Putting these burglaries in context

While these burglaries are cause for concern and should be taken seriously, crime in Lawrenceville has been on a steep downward trend for years. For instance: between 2010 and 2017, all Part 1 crimes decreased by 41% and burglaries decreased by 68% in Lawrenceville; between 2016 and 2017, Lawrenceville saw a 16% decrease in Part 1 violent crimes, a 7% decrease in Part 1 property crimes, and an 8% decrease in Part 2 crimes; with a total crime rate of 55 per 1,000 residents, Lawrenceville is the safest neighborhood in Zone 2 Police and has a significantly lower rate of total crime per 1,000 residents than the City of Pittsburgh overall.

 

Notes from Community Meeting on McConway and Torley’s Draft Operating Permit

A new draft operating permit has been issued by the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) for McConway and Torley, a steel foundry in Central Lawrenceville. The public comment period began on Thursday, November 2nd, 2017 and ends on Monday, December 4th.

On November 16th, Lawrenceville United and Lawrenceville Corporation hosted a community meeting with ACHD to provide information on the specifics of the draft operating permit. Please see below for meeting notes and the presentations from ACHD and Lawrenceville United:

For a quick 1-page summary of the draft operating permit and the community meeting, please also check out this summary document that LU compiled with key information.

For additional information about the air quality permit and the public process, please see below:

How can the community have a voice in this process? ACHD is currently accepting comments from the public through December 4, 2017 in one of the following ways

  1. Speak at the public hearing on Monday 12/4 at 6 p.m. at Arsenal Middle School (220 40th Street). Must register with Karen Sagel at 412-578-8115 no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, 12/1.
  2. Email to aqpermits@alleghenycounty.us
  3. Mail to 301 39th Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

If you want help preparing your testimony/comments, PennEnvironment has offered to be a resource. Contact Zach Barber at 412-521-0943 or zach@pennenvironment.org.

Lawrenceville United also encourages residents to reach out to us with comments or questions at 412-802-7220 or info@LUnited.org.