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Police, Mayfair talk crime fears

The 15th Police District last week held a meeting in the Lincoln High School auditorium in regard to the Jan. 9 quadruple shooting at Rowland Avenue and Guilford Street.

The shooting, which took place shortly before 10 p.m., killed three young men and critically wounded another.

Police have not given many details on the case, saying at last week’s meeting that the killings were a targeted attack.

The meeting featured nine police officials, including Inspector Frank Bachmayer, commander of the Northeast Police Division; Capt. Jose Medina, commander of the 15th district; and 15th district community relations officer Rachael Mahoney.

Mayfair Business Improvement District executive director Donny Smith, Mayfair Civic Association president Mike Serverson and the Rev. Patrick Welsh, pastor at St. Matthew Church, were in the crowd. Others in attendance included state Rep. Jared Solomon, City Council candidates Jim Hasher and Drew Murray and mayoral candidate Allan Domb, who was criticized by several people for voting for the “Driving Equality Bill” while he was in Council.

While there was a fairly large crowd, one man said there was poor notification for the meeting, adding that more time is spent promoting much less important public events such as paper shreddings.

Police want anyone with information on the murders to contact them at 215-686-TIPS, Tips@PhillyPolice.com or 215-686-3334.

As police indicated that the killings were a targeted attack and would not be releasing details, the meeting turned to other issues.

Medina said he has officers assigned to outside Lincoln at dismissal and has a good relationship with school officials.

There was a murder in October 2021 outside Lincoln, as a 21-year-old Aldine Street resident fired a gun that struck a man in the head as he was driving. That suspect pleaded guilty to third-degree murder and will be sentenced on Friday.

Another recent targeted murder in the area took place on Nov. 18, when a sanitation worker was shot and killed. Police said an arrest has been made in that case.

In the question-and-answer period, longtime residents lamented the changing neighborhood. They expressed fear of crimes such as carjacking and large-scale drug activity and pointed to numerous broken window theory-type reasons for violent crime in the neighborhood.

“When the quality of life goes down,” one man said, “the good people start leaving.”

Those reasons include broken city street lights, long waits for 911 calls to be answered, slow police response time and unlicensed rental units with owners who have the audacity to take the homestead exemption.

Some suggestions to deter crime included putting God and the Pledge of Allegiance back in public schools, increasing church attendance, ending early prison release, setting high bails and electing a mayor and other candidates with law-and-order platforms rather than sympathy for Antifa.

Bachmayer, a former 15th district captain who has lived in the Northeast his whole life, said, “We are aggressively looking at crime. We don’t want the bad people to win.”

Medina said the 15th has been successful in taking illegal guns off the streets.

The crowd did not fault the 15th for rising crime.

“This is a very pro-police neighborhood,” one man said.

One woman said “higher-ups” should be held accountable, suggesting Philadelphia oust District Attorney Larry Krasner.

Medina announced there will be a Police Service Area 3 meeting on Thursday, Jan. 19, at 7 p.m. at Roosevelt Playground, 6455 Walker St. ••

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