With the rise in robberies targeting Chinese delivery men, the Mayor’s Office on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs (OAPIA) and the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) organized a safety workshop on Wednesday, January 23rd from 5:00 – 7:00 pm at MPD’s 4th District Headquarters.
MPD’s 2007 data showed a rise in robberies and thefts through November 2007 by 10 and 11 percents. In the 4th District alone, there were 16 robberies of Chinese delivery men within the last 60 days. Typically, criminals use disposable cell phones to place an order, giving the wrong address or the address of a vacant house. When delivery men arrive, they are robbed of their food, money, and cell phone. In one incident, a driver’s car was also stolen.
Fifteen Chinese carryout restaurant workers and owners attended the workshop. 4D Commander Linda Brown, detectives, and officers as well as the Asian Liaison Unit provided safety measures that restaurant owners and staff can implement. 4D Detectives also updated participants about their investigations. OAPIA provided interpretation and referrals to other District government support services. They also asked participants to use the District’s language line to report these crimes and communicate with MPD if they did not speak English well.
“This workshop was a good step in addressing the safety concerns of our Chinese carryout restaurant owners and workers by MPD and OAPIA. We saw the safety need affecting our community and immediately started addressed it.” Said Soohyun “Julie” Koo, OAPIA’s Director.