WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — Two DC residents in the Shaw neighborhood are calling on city leaders after stray bullets pierced their apartment last night. They spoke exclusively with DC News Now.
This latest incident is too close to home for Joe Cox and his partner, Colten Staten. A stray bullet from a shooting last night near 8th Street NW flew straight through their apartment, just narrowly missing Cox who was sitting on the couch.
“I don’t feel safe in Washington, DC,”Joe Cox, Shaw resident
Cox and Staten explained they were turning in after a night out with friends when around 2:30 on Thursday morning, a stray bullet flew through the exterior wall of their 8th Street apartment. The bullet was shot near the area of 7th Street and T Street NW. Cox explains he was sitting on the couch and watching tv when he heard the bullet and saw the drywall on the floor. The bullet then continued in an upward trajectory, blowing through the bedroom door and spewing debris from the door onto the floor and the bed where Staten was already asleep.
“All of a sudden I heard, it’s a very hard sound to describe but, more or less like a rock being thrown against a wall because a bullet penetrated our exterior wall and through our drywall,” Cox explained.
With debris and drywall still on the floor and the bed where Staten was asleep, the two no longer want to live in their apartment after witnessing incidents in the last 5 days. Cox explained that the pair have witnessed multiple incidents before last night’s shooting.
“On Friday night, Friday the 13th, a shooting occurred directly below our window in front of the CVS at the corner of 8th [Street] and Florida [Avenue],” Cox explained.”And yesterday at 12:30-1 p.m. in the afternoon, I’m looking out the window watching men two men actively smashing out car windows and robbing them.”
Cox said he was on the phone with his ANC commissioner when he witnessed the break-ins and later encountered two detectives investigating a stolen car that was taken from a few feet away.
Staten explained he has lived in the District for four years and has never felt unsafe until this week. He says he doesn’t blame the property management company for what happened.
“I don’t think that there’s anything that the property management could do to keep us more safe. I think it’s just the location of where we’re at and I mean, this building is a secure building,” Staten said. “I think just locationally crime has increased in this area and that has caused concern for just existing and living in this area.”
Now they’re calling on city leaders to address the rise in crime.
“Mayor Bowser needs to get out here and actually do something and address the community. We need police presence at every corner of the U Street corridor. This has absolutely got to stop,” Cox exclaimed. “We need proactive police we need something done to protect the people that actually live here and want to stay alive.”
DC News Now did reach out to the Metropolitan Police Department for an interview, however, they declined the request. But Cox and Staten explained to DC News Now reporter Katie Rhee that they were already on the fence about leaving the city, and this latest scare has just pushed them over the edge.