Scoot Blog: Attacks on citizens continue - what NOPD can do
by Scoot,posted Aug 27 2013 7:27PM
New Orleans police are looking for 3 young men suspected of beating a couple in the French Quarter early Saturday morning. There is surveillance video of a couple being attacked at 6:00 am Saturday morning at the corner of Iberville and Dauphine.
Donnie Mehrtens, III, 27-years-old and from Metairie, was walking a girl to a car early Saturday morning when 3 men jumped the couple. Video shows the 3 men punching the girl in the face and forcing Mehrtens to the ground. The suspects then apparently ran off.
The female victim in the attack told WWL-TV that her male companion’s use of the N-word apparently provoked the attack.
“Donnie was just having a conversation with me and he had used the ‘N’ word just in a general conversation with me. Not calling anybody the name at all,” the woman told WWL-TV’s Katie Moore. Read WWL-TV’s report here.
Whatever the reason for the attack, why can’t NOPD do more to make their presence felt in some of the fringe areas in the French Quarter and the CBD? Police presence on Bourbon Street is strong, but this latest attack happened just one block off Bourbon St. If you are not downtown or in the French Quarter because you live there or out having a good time – then I don’t want you in my neighborhood!
With respect for the Constitution, is there anything wrong with police officers asking people wandering around the quarter or the CBD if they live in that neighborhood and if not, where they are going? This is not technically ‘stop & frisk,’ so why can’t police ask questions?
The story about the couple that was recently attacked on Iberville and Dauphine includes comments from the father of one of the attack victims. Donald Mehrtens, Jr., the father of the 27-year-old Metairie man who was attacked, expressed little confidence that NOPD will find the 3 suspects.
While I felt like NOPD did a thorough job attempting to track down the 4 men who attacked me, there have been no arrests. That doesn’t mean they did not do all they could to find the suspects, but it does reveal the reality that it’s not easy to find the thug-types who roam the ripe territory of the French Quarter and the CBD searching for prey.
As these types of seemingly random, senseless attacks continue, I am angrier now than I was after I was attacked. There appears to be a growing sense that thugs know they will probably get away with attacking people who fit the profile of being tourists or those people who have been out enjoying a night out. These are the people who are less likely to be armed and less likely to be prepared for a possible attack. So, the thug-types are targeting the most vulnerable, which also makes them cowards.
Our city shines when we host a major event and police presence is calculated to protect our visitors, but it appears that the same vigilance for protecting locals who are here throughout the year supporting businesses downtown is not the same.
How sad that more seems to be done to protect our visitors than our citizens!