Feb 052013
 

Porch lights illuminate the corner of Eighth and Chestnut, where a woman was forced out of a car after being kidnapped from the middle of the block and raped Monday night. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A 30-year-old New Orleans woman was kidnapped Monday evening in front of her Garden District home by three men, then beaten and raped as they drove around before letting her go and stealing her car, police and neighbors said.

The woman was in front of her home in the 1200 block of Eighth Street around 6:45 p.m. Monday when she was approached by two men, one of whom had a gun, said NOPD Officer Garry Flot, a department spokesman. They forced her into a waiting car driven by a third man, and they robbed and sexually assaulted her as they drove around, Flot said.

The men then drove back to the original location, took her keys and then stole her car, a silver 1999 Honda Accord with Louisiana license plate “OUZ 831,” Flot said. The men then forced her out of the car at the corner of Chestnut and Eighth and drove off with both cars, Flot said. She was later treated at the hospital for bruises, scratches and abrasions, Flot said.

Elizabeth Gamard, the victim’s landlord and a resident of the same block, said her teenage daughter was sitting in the front room when she heard a knock on a door, and answered it to find the woman standing there with her face bloody. When Gamard saw the woman, she reached forward to embrace her, but the woman stopped her, she said.

“She said, ‘Don’t touch me. I’m evidence,’” Gamard said. “I said, ‘Did they violate you?’ and she said, ‘Yes.’”

The block, a row of double shotguns on a smaller scale than many nearby Garden District mansions, is home to a number of single women, many neighbors said, leaving everyone shaken and upset. Gamard called the victim a good friend.

“I’m devastated. Her life will never be the same,” Gamard said. “No one, none of us would think that was possible.”

Anyone with information about the case is urged to call CrimeStoppers at 822-1111 to leave anonymous tip that could be eligible for a cash reward.

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  • KingKalashnikov

    I hope these bastards are found in a ditch somewhere.

  • mylsuhat

    This is why everyone, epically women living along, should consider concealed carry.

  • Federal Tiger

    http://oi50.tinypic.com/2iru1c0.jpg – Hope this crime camera caught some of the incident

  • mardiclaw

    great reporting. letting everyone know that a bunch of women live there. as far as the concealed carry comment? you should carry a gun unless you know how to use one.

    • mardiclaw

      I’d like to also point out that when kristen palmer stood on st roch a few years back? and reported that we had no street lights? the very next day? the muggings and robberies began. it ended with a neighbor murdered. never expose these things. or, when the next one happens? know that you helped make it happen. like palmer did on st roch.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1394411722 Kathryn Sinclair Lanier

        Amen!

  • http://www.facebook.com/ceverettharris Chad Harris

    Saturday Evening- My wife was held up at GunPoint and Carjacked…I have done all the foot work for the police. I left the credit cards on so I could track these people and I have tons of surveillance footage from several stores. Walgreens and Popeyes were extremely helpful as well as the Metairie Road Discount near the canal. All I have to say- I am sick to my stomach that people act like this.

    Mr. Thug….I would suggest taking up another line of work because your days are numbered.

    • http://twitter.com/WhoDatNation47 WHODAT

      sounds like a good idea. but by reporting it stolen the cashier can use their emergency buttons that alerts police without them even knowing they are on the way. Some stores can lock doors from behind the counter and some will just keep them preoccupied till they arrive. Guys could be in jail by now.

      • Christopher Morris

        When you report a card as stolen, the bank just cancels it and sends you a new one. Even if a cashier could tell a stolen card from one that is declined for any other reason (they can’t), and even if the store had all those fancy security devices (they don’t, unless it’s a bank, check cashing/payday loan place, etc.), they’re not going to put their customers and employees at risk by locking them in with a violent criminal.

        Simple property crimes where nobody gets hurt are at the very bottom of the pecking order. Even after Chad gathers all the evidence, I wouldn’t be surprised if charges are never filed. Maybe tell the police that the thug had a joint on him? They’ll have SWAT and K-9s busting down the guy’s door within an hour.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Keith-Hudson/100000807716247 Keith Hudson

      Great job Kojak! Now, how about finding out who killed JFK!

  • Cathleen Castle

    I understand you have a duty to report the crime and give the public information, but you’ve gone too far by showing a photo of the victim’s home, as well as identifying the cross streets. She has the right to her privacy, but now she can be identified much easier. Not to mention, her attackers could retaliate for her reporting to the police. You’ve also identified the area as “home to a number of single women,” thereby puting their safety at risk as well.

    • UptownMessenger

      Cathleen, thanks for your concern for the victim’s safety, and please know that I share it. The photo, however, is not of her home — it’s of the row of four houses in the block where she was dropped off. The cross streets were identified by police in the release to the all the media — newspapers and TV stations included — so my photo does not convey any new information there. And, unfortunately, it’s not new information to the rapists, anyway — remember, they picked her up from the location, then took her back to it to get the car, according to police. Finally, women live everywhere in New Orleans, and identifying these as women as “single” isn’t going to increase their risk of attack — it simply shows another element of why the crime is frightening to the neighbors I spoke to there last night.

      Again, I take seriously my obligation not to put the people I cover at any additional risk, and I think you’re right to raise these issues. In this case, however, I don’t think the photo or the statement in question do so.

      • Cathleen Castle

        I disagree that identifying the women as single doesn’t increase their risk of attack. Who is more likely to be stalked or subsequently attacked? A woman who lives by herself, or a woman who lives with a roommate or partner/spouse? If I’m a rapist and want an easy target and to decrease the risk that someone may come in during the attack, I’m going to go after a single woman, living alone.
        But I do thank you for taking the time to respond to my concerns, and in such a polite manner.

        • Nola84

          The woman that was attacked is not single. She lives with a partner. A rather large intimidating looking man, in fact. Your status as single or not has no bearing on what a psychopath will do when they see you walking from your car to your front door.

      • B.C.

        The photo may not be of her exact home but that is within 50 meters of where she lives. You say that this is the block where she was dropped and not where she lives. Last I checked, the 1200 block of 8th Street is the block just south of the Chestnut – 8th St. intersection.. which amounts to a total distance of about 50 meters between her “home” and her “drop-off location.” I’m not a geographer or a city planner but I call that information good enough to serve as an address. I’ll never understand what constitutes “responsible journalism” but I’d at least appreciate you taking ownership of releasing her location, not hiding behind a technicality.

        Also, I find it particularly ironic (and frustrating) that you believe it necessary to release details about the victim’s location and yet there are no details included about the suspects. I’ve read the source reports from T-P and as expected, they’ve left out any mention of race.

        Lastly, it’s currently estimated that over 54% of rapes/sexual assaults in the US go unreported. By releasing the home address and photo of the victim’s block, you’re only serving to worsen this statistic. On the whole, I respect your work on UM but you should be ashamed of your contributions today.

        • http://www.facebook.com/dirk.fontenot Dirk Fontenot

          From the NOPD email: “The men are described as African-American in their early to late 20’s. The victim was unable to describe the suspect’s car at this time.”

      • CommonCents

        Identifying these women as single doesn’t increase their chance of attack? So why did you include it in this article? What relevance does it have? Do you feel it decreases their risk? Does it make the people who live here feel more safe?

      • Joy

        Both you and the TP did say they abducted her from in front of her home. She could have been parking to go to Joey K’s or to get a gelato- it’s a fairly busy area, and the perps didn’t have to know her reason for parking there.
        You’ve pretty much assured that she will be intimidated in the court process.

      • Fixitnow

        TAKE DOWN THE NAME OF THE LANDLORD. This is too much information for a sexual assault case. Notice this? “The landlord’s name is being withheld in order to protect the identity of the woman. NOLA.com |The Times-Picayune has a policy of not naming victims of sexual assault.” Take note. Shape up and fix this ASAP or we will call the police and have them make you to take it down.

        Signed,

        Disgusted reader who is sickened that your report is focused on this horrid crime as a narrative instead of an advocacy piece to help catch the perpetrators and protect the victim.

    • Joan Wheeler Nicholson

      Agreed. Really stupid reporting!!!

  • Me

    I think one of the major factors with crime in this area is the reliance on the garden district patrol and the absence of any city police in these areas. The only time you see the police is if they are speeding through to get somewhere else. They’re never “patrolling” this area. Also, a woman with a concealed weapon against 3 guys? That would likely just piss them off, get her pistol whipped, and get the guys their biggest money maker in the purse – a weapon they can scratch the serial # off of and resell. Any description of the perps?

  • leslie

    Absolutely heartbreaking. My heart goes out to this woman and that she may find peace and strength over the coming days. In the meantime, I hope these vermin are eradicated from the earth and find their seat in the hotest corner of hell.

  • Nierue

    Lord have mercy, we live in a violent society. We should not get used to living with this kind of violence, or think that the only way to deal with it is with more violence. We need a transformation of our sick culture, where things like this happen way too often.

    • Guest

      You are correct, but a transformation of culture, if it started today, could take as long as two generations. It will not start today-morality, religion, ethics are under attack so that right/wrong cannot be taught in any meaningful way–it cannot be absorbed by example or osmosis if it isn’t there in the first place. But even assuming it could be, what do we do to protect ourselves in the meantime?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Keith-Hudson/100000807716247 Keith Hudson

        Try to be truthful, and stop defending wrong. When violence happens to Blacks, I never hear the residents in Garden District express any remorse, being the perpetrators are whites! But as soon as the same violence happens to one of ya’ll, the whole neighborhood got something to say! Hypocrites!

        • Joy

          Excuse me? Who was defending these rapists? White people in the Garden District are terrorizing blacks? When does that happen? When did all this white on black crime happen, anywhere? The black victims of violent crime are routinely suffering at the hands of white criminals? What planet do you live on?

          Remorse is an emotion expected from those who committed crimes. I think what you are looking for is the word sympathy, not remorse.
          As for sympathy- yes, we do feel horrible about all the crime victims in the city. Believe it or not, even us “terrible, violent whites” in the Garden District really do have sympathy for violent crime victims, no matter who they are. To live in a city plagued with violent crime affects us all, and it affects every aspect of our lives.
          I don’t want to see anybody raped, beaten, or killed. Do you?

  • JeannieD

    I’m a single female who recently moved back to NOLA and am currently living in the ‘burbs, but have been thinking about moving closer into the city in the next few months. Between this and the attempted kidnapping last month and the seemingly endless armed robberies in the Garden District, I’d want to live Uptown WHY?!?!? 6:45pm in front of her own house?! I love the Uptown area— heck, I was born at Touro— but it gives me serious pause…

  • baconordeath

    What we need are some worthwhile cops in this town. Shiftless, fat, thieving crooked bastards are of no use to anyone. Criminals know they have the run of the place. And spare me the concealed weapon crap. If someone draws a gun on you, they’re not exactly going to wait for you to pull yours from your purse, clear the safety, and so forth. The most dangerous cities in the country are almost all in states with virtually non-existent gun laws, so it seems pretty specious to argue that arming everyone acts as a deterrent. No, it’s time for New Orleanians to stop answering every criticism of the city’s failings with “Yeah, you right” and start demanding a responsive municipal government that is accountable to the citizenry. Real cops on the streets, in the neighborhoods, off their fat asses and walking the banquettes getting to know the people who live there — that’s the only solution.

    • http://www.facebook.com/babsbjohnson Babs Bryant Johnson

      The police of the 6th District are the best in the city led by an incredibly dedicated and smart Commander. That is not the problem here. I do however agree with the notion that women carrying weapons would have prevented this tragedy is nonsense.

    • nevermindme

      “The most dangerous cities in the country are almost all in states with virtually non-existent gun laws” – Where do you get this information? New York, Chicago, DC, LA – all places with high gun violence and the most gun restrictions in the country.

  • Concerned

    As a single women who lives on the block featured in this article, I have to agree that we are all very upset and shaken by what has happened to our friend and neighbor. It is an unspeakable tragedy. However, what is going on in the media today is not all helpful. The above article features a photo of our houses AND advertises that our block is full of single women. What is that??? That information will do nothing to aid in capturing the culprits….it only advertises our vulnerabilities at a time when we already feel unprotected and exposed. Thanks.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1394411722 Kathryn Sinclair Lanier

      Some protection, huh? I am infuriated that the reporter (and publication!) published the photo of the block and gave the info that the block is occupied by single women. Those with bad intentions are now also in the know. I say MOVE and send the moving bill to news director Robert Morris! (FYI: I lived on that block as a single woman and as a newly wed in the first half of the 1990′s. As far as I am concerned this crime has occurred to my neighbor too! You are all in my prayers!)

    • UptownMessenger

      Concerned – thank you for your comment and please know how sorry I am for the pain and difficulty that you and your neighbors are experiencing. I take your concern very seriously, so I’d like to address it specifically.

      This article was published immediately after the NOPD issued their news release on the case, which included both the block number where the incident took place and the intersection where the victim was dropped off. Every media outlet in the city received this information, and in addition to this article, I’ve seen it in two newspapers and four TV reports. I’m sure there has been more. Most of those reports feature images of these same houses. And this is what happens after every crime that attracts citywide attention, whether it is this organization or another one, Uptown or somewhere else.

      I am not trying to “excuse” my reporting by saying that everyone else is doing it. What I am saying is that, everyone else is doing it because showing the block where a crime took place is not regarded as increasing the chances of causing another crime to take place. And of course, the men who did this have been there — twice. They also know what the block looks like already.

      Nor will the statement that single women live in the block create any further danger. Would-be rapists, sadly, have an entire city from which to pluck their victims, single or otherwise. Frankly, I’d speculate that criminals are drawn to the Garden District not because of the gender of its residents, but because of their perceived wealth — that is their true target, and as Superintendent Serpas said yesterday, the rape was a sick, brutal crime of opportunity. It could have happened anywhere Uptown, and nearly did a month ago in Broadmoor: http://uptownmessenger.com/2013/01/broadmoor-woman-escapes-from-carjackers-who-tried-to-abduct-her-police-say/

      The statement was intended to convey the damage that this crime did not only to the victim, but to an entire neighborhood. Again, I realize that the ensuing media attention adds to the pain you are all feeling, and I am personally sorry for that. But Monday night when I began receiving messages that “something terrible” had happened there, and I was trying to determine what that was, I also sensed a sort of fear and loneliness from some neighbors because of the lack of information, the fact that the public was not even aware that something had happened there. And it is my belief that ignoring such a horrific incident would be far worse.

      Finally, I want to say that none of these decisions occurred in a vacuum. Everything that is in this article — or not — was discussed deliberately with law enforcement officials and/or the neighbors who contacted me, some of whom asked not to be quoted. The fact that other news organizations made different decisions with regard to specific details does not mean they were made carelessly, and on the whole the reporting here is not out of line with the other reports.

      Once more, I am sorry for the pain you and your neighbors feel as a result of this attack. I am sorry that the media attention is now amplifying it, and I am sorry for my role in it. If you still disagree with my decisions, I certainly respect that, but I hope you will believe me when I say that the safety of the entire community was of the utmost concern to me in my writing.

      Yours,

      Robert Morris
      UptownMessenger.com

  • CommonCents

    It’s pretty ridiculous to report that this block is full of single women. There is no justification for that in this article. Yes, the crime report and location are public record, but there is no need to further exacerbate the stress already on the people in the neighborhood. DELETE IT from this article. Have some compassion and use some common sense.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1394411722 Kathryn Sinclair Lanier

      AGREED!!!!!!!!

  • ladyarcher3

    no description of the men?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jim.mcarthur.10 Jim McArthur

    Baconordeath is wrong about cities and gun laws and crimes – what about Chicago? The toughest gun laws of any city, the toughest gun laws of any state, and at 500 murders a year. Sad to say, he’s right about our police department, though. Not Our Problem, Dude just wants to cruise around with a collection of gadgets buckled around their waist. The private patrols are the only police these neighborhoods have.

  • NewGrayMare

    Once again I am so concerned about the crime in the city and could not imagine what I would do were it me! Thank goodness those thugs did not kill her since they seem to believe they will never be caught or identified. It has gotten to the point where people are not safe on our own steets or sitting on our porches anymore. Sad time for New Orleans. These guys need to be caught and locked away where they never see daylight any more – forever! Let’s just pray there are no screw up getting them and the Judicial System steps up to do what is right for New Orleans and the kidnapped woman.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jim.mcarthur.10 Jim McArthur

      If / when they catch these three, let me guess. . . they will all have previous convictions for violent felonies. At least one will be on parole or probation. At least one will probably be a jail escapee, or be wanted as a fugitive, or be wanted for questioning in connection with another violent crime. We need to forget about trying to “rehabilitate” people who have never been habilitated in the first place, and go back to chain gangs and hard labor for all recidivists and all violent felons.

  • http://twitter.com/kurtbuc Kurt Buchert

    Why isn’t UPTOWN MESSENGER reporting the race of the perps??? EVERY single detail of the perps should be reported. Please explain your policy & why that makes sense whatsoever.

  • Riffraff

    Yeah this is kind of half-assed reporting but at least someone is writing it. Its even more unnerving when 90% of the crimes posted here aren’t mentioned on the 5:00 news. Unfortunately, this writer has no care for the “tale” which can be extremely informative but also gives false hope. The “tale” will go into much greater detail and gives the reader a frighteningly realistic description that they can dwell on and take seriously but its kind of like reading fiction, you feel separate. This snippet just leaves me sick but it IS a kidnapping/rape a mile from my house and atleast I know about it. If the NY times sent someone to write this article we wouldnt really be any safer. So thank you, Uptown Messenger, for keeping me informed of even the tiniest uptown crime. I browse you every day in disbelief. I always want the articles to have some kind of “happy” ending. Like maybe this girl was a drug dealer or she was walking home alone drunk at 3am, some kind of moral that I can apply to protect myself but thats not the case…is it?

    • nolady

      A “HAPPY ENDING” for a kidnapping and rape? What on earth is wrong with you?
      Guess what: even drug dealers and drunks girls don’t deserve to be raped and kidnapped. NOBODY DOES.

      • Riffraff

        Sorry, didnt mean it that way. I would feel safer if I could distance myself from what happened. NO ONE deserves this, but I am a young girl and if there were a “happy” ending it would mean I could protect myself.

    • B.C.

      I’m sad to admit this but I feel the same way, Riffraff. I read this and hoped that there would be a paragraph at the end with some kind of “rationalization” but I’m afraid this crime might just be an act of pure evil.

      I still stand by my earlier comment on here but I too appreciate UM’s consistent reporting of a very ugly side of New Orleans.

  • cdaisybird

    The description of the block also exaggerates the amount of single women on the block in an oddly sensational way. I have lived there three years, and I know who lives in each house. It is primarily families with children or couples.

    I agree with Concerned that the hearsay description of the block’s residents does nothing to aid in capturing the culprits.

    The victim’s marital/dating/cohabitating status had nothing to do with the attack; she was a woman outside her residence in the early evening. A woman lives in, and comes and goes from, almost every house on the street and so we should all be sympathetic, concerned, and vigilant.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1394411722 Kathryn Sinclair Lanier

      I agree with your post. I am even more concerned for the survivor’s privacy and peace of mind and for the neighbors’ sense of peace since the reporter decided to give so much detail. I lived on that block in the early ’90s and found the neighbors (men and women, married and single) to all be very watchful and concerned. Alas, there is no telling what schedule criminals are on and there will always be a moment when no one is watching.

  • CJ

    TAKE THE LANDLORD’S NAME OUT OF THIS ARTICLE. IT IS SO EASY TO IDENTIFY THE APARTMENT THIS WAY. PLEASE PROTECT THE VICTIM!!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1394411722 Kathryn Sinclair Lanier

      AGREED!!!!

    • http://twitter.com/Owen_Courreges Owen Courrèges

      CJ,

      You’re quite wrong for three reasons:

      1) Multiple media outlets posted the landlord’s name. It’s out there.

      2) It’s not so easy to identify the apartment from this. You’d have to check public records, and from that point you’d have to figure out which unit is hers (which is not public information).

      3) Finally, the perpetrators already know where the victim’s apartment is. They abducted her right outside of it (again, a fact reported by the police) and stole her car.

      Again, I don’t understand why some of you are struggling so hard to condemn this article. It’s frankly bizarre.

  • Roland Deschain

    A whole block of single women? Sign me up!

  • Diogonese

    Ladies, buy a gun and get the training on how to use it.

  • Zimpelton

    I wonder if those feeling most upset and vulnerable because of the details in the reporting have expressed their outrage over this terrible CRIME to their councilmember and the NOPD with the same fervor as they’re doing here. That would accomplish more to allay their fears.

    • http://twitter.com/Owen_Courreges Owen Courrèges

      Hear, hear. I really tire of people overly concerned over the particulars of crime reporting. Some get upset about locations being referenced. Others don’t want details about victims. Others don’t want details about perpetrators. There’s just no winning. Aside from not publishing the names of victims and material witnesses in certain sensitive instances, I really don’t see what greater ethical obligation there is aside from the more basic obligation to print the facts.

      • Zimpelton

        What’s tragic and truly ironic is that the hysteria that many commenters have displayed here has turned a relatively minor detail into the main news. They’ve created their own massive bogeyman. It’s selfish. Nary a word about the heinous crime and its unfortunate victim. Nor a meaningful word about how crimes as savage and brazen as this one can be prevented. When I first read the article the detail didn’t figure prominently in my understanding, but now it’s perversely become larger than the crime itself! Poor Robert, who’s always done a top-notch job of journalism, has become a target of the classic kick-the-dog show of impotent rage.

  • Concerned Human

    http://www.streetdirectory.com/travel_guide/3077/family/how_to_reduce_crime_in_your_city.html

    Can someone pass this on to the NOLA government? The government and the community have to work together in order to create a change.

    Everything below comes from the website listed above.

    (NC)-During my term as Chair of the National Strategy on Community
    Safety and Crime Prevention, I have a visited cities in the United
    States, England and Belgium to discuss successful crime reduction
    strategies with local crime prevention officials. One thing that struck
    me was how similar their experiences were. In each city there was a
    serious crime problem, a focused response and a substantial improvement
    in both the reality and the perception of safety.

    Although there
    are no “one-size-fits-all” solutions, there are common elements at
    work, chief among them a willingness to involve the community in a
    meaningful way. As one Chief of Police observed, “I [used to think] that
    the police fought crime alone and that the community could only get in
    the way. Now we’ve got it right. We understand that in order to prevent
    crime and keep our community safe, we’ve got to involve the community as
    our partner.”

    Jack Calhoun, President and CEO of the U.S.
    National Crime Prevention Council has identified six factors that were
    present in successful American city programs, even though actual
    strategies differed. They are:

    A belief
    that all key municipal entities must play a role in cutting crime and
    violence. Schools, businesses, municipal government and social services
    must all work together.

    The need to engage in
    specific, trackable actions. Cities need to have clear data on what the
    problems are, where they are and what’s causing them. They need to know
    what’s working and what isn’t in order to use resources effectively.

    The courage to do business differently and to share power. Giving up “turf,” while difficult, is essential to working together.

    A
    dual commitment to targeted enforcement and prevention – things like
    after school programs and mentoring. Law enforcement resources must be
    deployed consistently with broader crime prevention objectives.

    A
    commitment to the long term. This is a challenge when some offer
    instant solutions, but helping young people build better lives doesn’t
    happen overnight.

    And, as Calhoun puts it, “Clear,
    passionate, hands-on commitment from the leading policy-makers, prime
    among them the Mayor and the Chief of Police.”

    Leadership;
    working together; identifying problems and then attacking them;
    measuring results; doing business differently; being tough on crime and
    equally tough on the causes of crime . . . these are the factors that we
    witness everyday in projects and communities throughout Canada. They
    produce positive changes here, just as they do in countries around the
    world.

    For details on how Canadian towns and cities are working
    together to reduce and prevent crime, and how your community can get
    involved, visit http://www.crime-prevention.org.

    Barbara Hall, is Chair of Canada’s National Strategy on Community Safety and Crime Prevention.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cherylnicholl57 Cheryl Nicholl

    I thank you Uptown Messenger for keeping us all up to date. As for the crime- my heart breaks for the victim and her partner, and I hope the urban animals get strung up by their…..

  • nolabrah

    Dear Uptown Messenger,

    I am often—almost always—impressed and appreciative of the quality of your reporting. This story, however, is not one of those occasions, and the story and all comments should be taken down immediately, and a revised article posted. I know one of your writers defended the story and you likely have some journalistic pride behind what you report and how you report it, but in some circumstances the customer / consumer is always right, and this is such a circumstance.

    There is absolutely no need to publish that the block “is home to a number of single women.” These days thugs have computers, and tablets, and smart phones. They can find and read about what crimes their fellow thugs commit. When you publish something like that—whether it’s true or not—you risk turning the entire block into a big target.

    Further, the TP, in its story, withheld the Landlord’s name at her wish because she is in fear of retaliation. You mention her name not once, not twice, but five times. What purpose is served by publishing her name?

    I am a daily reader, and I value this website. But there is much wrong with this story and it should be removed.

    Sincerely,
    A Concerned Reader

    • http://twitter.com/Owen_Courreges Owen Courrèges

      nolabrah,

      Oh come on; countless of blocks in the city are home to multiple single women. That’s hardly the type of detail that puts anybody at risk, and if criminals are really that tech-savvy then they have better means of selecting potential targets than exceedingly vague references in a news articles.

      As for the landlord’s name, it is also mentioned in WDSU and Fox 8′s articles, so that particular cat is out of the bag. I don’t know whether the landlord specifically requested that her name not be used or whether the Times-Pic simply has a blanket policy with respect to naming bystanders, but in any event, her name is clearly out there and I frankly don’t see how there would be any risk of retaliation (she was not identified as a witness to the crime, just to the victim in the aftermath).

      Crime reporting shouldn’t reveal sensitive details within reason, but these clearly don’t quality.

      • nolabrah

        Touche re: the landlord, I saw the WWL clip she appeared in; she’s obviously not too concerned for her safety. I had only read the TP story.

        I still think the line about single women on the block, at the very least, reads poorly and is insensitive to those residents.

        • http://twitter.com/Owen_Courreges Owen Courrèges

          nolabrah,

          I still disagree. As Robert explained, it is far, far too general to risk anybody’s safety and frames part of why local residents found this crime so concerning. I think you and others are really reaching when you construe this as somehow offensive. It’s the type of thing people cite when they want to feel outraged but can’t really find a decent hook. Weak beer.

          • nolabrah

            Well, first I didn’t say it risked anybody’s safety in particular, but rather had the potential of marking the block in general as a target area. It read poorly and many people took notice.

            Perhaps, there’s still a modicum of society that values privacy and hates to see addresses, pictures, names, and faces included in a story about a vicious rape. The line about all the single ladies living on the block was in poor taste and I took exception to it.

            But, your demeaning psychoanalysis of myself and other commenters is the type of thing people often employ when they lack meaningful justifications for their viewpoints. So they resort to personal attacks on those who simply disagree with them on a matter of strict opinion. You are entitled to your opinion sir, and I mine. I feel I’ve adequately expressed mine and you yours. Enjoy the weak beer.

  • stonerolled

    time to arm yourselves, no description of the men, what is up with that

  • disqus_S6dj9DQBkS

    sounds like the work of some “youths.”

  • Bob

    Bad call to publish a picture of the victim’s block and mention that many single women live there. It’s not the worst thing you could have done, and probably doesn’t put the victim or her neighbors in danger, but it also does absolutely nothing to provide the public with relevant information or increase the quality of the story. While I appreciate the difficulty of balancing your professional obligation to inform the public against your legal and ethical obligations to respect victims’ privacy, safety, and dignity, this situation was a no-brainer; there is no “call” to make when information is useless, to say nothing of gratuitous, but has the potential–however slight–to compromise safety or the victim’s dignity. In my opinion, you blew it.

    • http://twitter.com/Owen_Courreges Owen Courrèges

      Bob,

      Having a picture of the scene definitely adds something to the story, at least in the way any picture does. It physically shows the scene, thus making the occurrences more real to the reader. I suppose you want newspapers to just fire all their photographers because you clearly feel that news photographs are generally “useless.”

      In any case, the locations where crimes are committed is public record. The location was specifically referenced in the NOPD press release. And of course the perpetrators themselves know where this is; they committed the crime. There is absolutely zero potential for this photograph to compromise anybody’s safety or dignity. Your comment is the only thing here that “blew it.”

  • Guest666

    The Garden District is saturated with single women, as is Uptown, By-water, The University Area etc…. Why attack this article and or Robert, when it is the Rapist/Kidnappers/Car Jackers that need to be the primary focus of the community. Who are they? Where are they? It is incredible that Robert and his article have been demonized and not the monsters who have committed this heinous crime!!! Not only is this incident horrific, but it is a tragedy that women who live in New Orleans, whether in the Garden District, Uptown, University Area, By-Water, Ninth Ward, etc… need to always be cognizant of their surrounding of such looming monsters and predators. Sad, sad, sad. Prayers and support to the victim.

  • http://www.facebook.com/leeandranolting Leeandra Nolting

    1. The victim in this is not single. As a previous commenter pointed out, she lives with a very large, hairy, intimidating-looking man and has for quite some time.

    2. I’m pretty sure that a wedding/engagement ring, joint tax return, etc. is not some sort of self-defense device against rapists.

    3. As we make up half the population, pretty much every block in New Orleans has women living in it.