Police Increase Patrols in Response to Groups of Teens Gathering in Germantown
Police are adding patrols to the Central Business District in Germantown because of large groups of young people who are gathering in the Town Center area, fighting and causing trouble for merchants, businesses, and residents in the area.
5th District – Germantown Montgomery County Police Commander David Gillespie said that he had increased the number of officers in the area to better deal with these groups of teenagers in Germantown’s Central Business District.
“We have been dealing with large groups of teens in the community for the two or three weeks,” said Gillespie on Monday. “In response, the 5th District has increased the number of officers in that area, and we will have seven-day-a-week coverage through April.” Gillespie further explained that beginning May 1 the 5th District will be adding a 2nd Central Business District unit. “This will enable us to have seven-day-a-week coverage in the Central Business District going forward,” said Gillespie.
According to DataMontgomery.com, the County’s Data Portal, since March 1, 2016, there have been two strong-arm robberies, four assaults, one auto theft, one vandalism call, and one trespassing call in either parking lots or on the street in the Central Business District. According to a source who wished to remain anonymous, in one case a woman was pulled from her vehicle and beaten by teenagers after she called the young people animals.
Police have also been called to the area eight times during the month of March for shoplifting calls from retailers in the Central Business District, according to DataMontgomery.com. While not all of these calls can be attributed to teenagers gathering in the area, all of these calls took place between the hours of 1:00 pm and 9:30 pm, which is the time the youths are creating problems.
“We want everyone to enjoy the community, but we cannot allow this behavior to disrupt businesses and intimidate others. The Central Business District Unit is working with business owners to keep the community safe and address these issues,” said Gillespie.
The police commander is asking business owners in the Town Center area to report all incidents so that police will be able to identify those who are responsible.
He is also asking parents to warn their children about being involved in this behavior. “We also ask parents to talk with their children about not being a part of this type of activity,” said Gillespie.
File Photo by Germantown Pulse.