What difference does it make? To the bad guy, it's the difference between 1 to 30 years in Angola for "burglary" versus 10 to 99 years for "robbery." For the NOPD, it allows them to report the incident to the FBI as a more benign "property crime" by calling it a burglary; if they report it as a robbery it's classified a "violent crime." And "property crimes" pall in comparison to "violent crimes" when Big Chief Warren Riley tries to brag about crime figures. (Keep on eye on this site--we'll soon have an analysis there of the just-released FBI figures for 2007.)
In the case that raised this issue, 5 black boys--armed with a gun--entered a house at 831 Touro St. and robbed 2 Hispanic workers there of their wallets. An arrest warrant for "aggravated burglary" rather than "armed robbery" was put out for one of the punks, but sloppy police work botched that.
Now we have 2 more "aggravated burglaries" reported by the 8th District as happening last Saturday (6.7.08). See if you think these should have been classified as something else instead:
- A Hispanic woman was returning to her room at 1630 Canal St. at 7:20 a.m. As she opened the door, a black man and black woman came up behind her and pushed her into her room. The 2 perpetrators took cash from the room and fled.
- 3 men were in a store at 635 Decatur St. that was closed for the night at 11:55 p.m. when a black dude burst in with a pistol and removed cash from the victims' pockets and fled.
- Tuesday (6.3.08), 1:05 a.m., Canal and LaSalle streets: A black man walking on Canal was accosted by another black man who pulled a knife and demanded money. The victim complied and the robber fled toward the river.
- Friday (6.6.08), 4:49 a.m., Elysian Fields and St. Claude avenues: A black man sitting in his car was robbed by another black man who pulled a shotgun and demanded money. The victim complied and the robber ran across the street to a gold-colored car which sped away on St. Claude to St. Bernard Avenue.
- Sunday (6.8.08), 1:55 a.m., Tchoupitoulas and Gravier streets: A white man standing on the corner was accosted by 3 black thugs, one of whom pulled a knife while the other 2 removed cash from victim's pockets.
- Patrick Porter and David Cobarruviaz, both black and 21, were arrested 6.2.08 at 4:48 a.m. by Officers Brandon Ludwig and Billy Tregle for breaking into a car at Decatur and Conti streets. the duo share a birthday on 12.18.86 but apparently don't share finances--Porter posted $5,000 bond to bail out of OPP before we could get his picture; Cobarruviaz is still there.
- Kendal Russ, a black punk, 17, 5'5" tall, weighing 120 pounds, is wanted for snatching the purse of a white woman at 5:09 a.m. on 5.25.08 in the 300 block of Bourbon Street.
- Michael Merrill, a black dude, 28, 5'10" tall, weighing 150 pounds, is wanted for punching a white man in the chest and taking his wallet on 5.26.08 at 4:15 p.m. at St. Ann and Dauphine streets.
Here's what we've gleaned the past week from the Times-Picayune that hasn't appeared in the 8th District reports:
Assault and battery
- 5.30.08, 12:30 p.m., 1000 block of Ursulines Avenue
- 6.1.08, 5:40 a.m., Bourbon and Conti streets
- 6.1.08, 3:51 a.m., 100 block of Royal Street
- 6.2.08, 12:11 p.m., French Market Place
- 6.2.08, 10:40 a.m., 700 block of Canal Street
- 6.2.08, 6:00 a.m., 800 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.2.08, 3:16 a.m., Bourbon and St. Louis streets
- 6.2.08, 12:06 a.m., 400 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.3.08, 11:48 p.m., 800 block of Convention Center Boulevard
- 6.3.08, 11:00 p.m., 300 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.2.08, 9:32 p.m., 1000 block of Annunciation Street
- 5.30.08, 9:19 p.m., first block of Canal Street
- 5.30.08, 2:17 p.m., 200 block of Poydras Street
- 5.30.08, 11:01 a.m., 800 block of Chartres Street
- 6.1.08, 3:55 p.m., 800 block of Iberville Street
- 6.1.08, 12:56 p.m., 100 block of Decatur Street
- 6.2.08, 6:08 p.m., 300 block of Camp Street
- 6.2.08, 5:34 p.m., 700 block of Iberville Street
- 6.2.08, 10:57 a.m., 200 block of St. Charles Avenue
- 6.2.08, 3:50 a.m., 300 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.2.08, 10:38 p.m., 500 block of Decatur Street
- 6.3.08, 6:48 p.m., 700 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.3.08, 5:15 p.m., 900 block of Convention Center Boulevard
- 6.3.08, 6:38 p.m., 900 block of Convention Center Boulevard
- 6.3.08, 1:54 p.m., 900 block of Iberville Street
- 6.2.08, 11:55 a.m. 600 block of Bourbon Street
- 6.3.08, 12:11 a.m., 700 block of Bourbon Street
NONPAC: The meeting is at 5:30 p.m. Thursday (6.12.08) at the Maison Dupuy Hotel, 1001 Toulouse St. (at Burgundy Street), in the Renoir Room.