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D.C. Officer Serving as Lookout Charged with Murder

D.C. Officer Serving as Lookout Charged with Murder

The Washington Post via YellowBrix

December 16, 2009

WASHINGTON, DC – A D.C. police officer was arrested Tuesday and charged with felony murder in connection with a fatal shooting about two weeks ago in Southeast Washington, police officials said.

In a case that appeared to be without recent precedent, police said Reginald Jones, who has been a member of the force for six years, was arrested in the death of Arvel S. Alston, 40.

Police said Jones “basically served as a lookout” and did not shoot Alston, who was killed in the 4300 block of Fourth Street on Dec. 1. A police source said Alston had been attempting a robbery that went awry.

Jones was on duty at the time and was at the scene in a patrol car assigned to the gun-recovery unit that he works for, a police source said. He fled when shots were fired, the source said.

Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier called Jones, 40, “a disgrace to the uniform.”

“We will not allow this department to be judged by one bad apple,” she said in brief remarks during a news conference at police headquarters.

Related video: The Chief’s press conference

Rather, she said, “we should be judged on how we handled that bad apple.”

Alston and at least one other man were to carry out the robbery, according to police sources. However, the sources said, the intended victim resisted, and in the ensuing moments, Alston was fatally shot.

Three police sources said the shot that killed Alston was fired by his son.

In addition to Jones, two other men have been arrested in Alston’s death, and police sources identified one of them — Arvel Crawford — as Alston’s son.

The charge of felony murder, which faces the officer, Alston’s son and the third suspect, may be brought when a death occurs during the commission of a serious felony. The death need not be intentional and may be accidental.

The intended victim of the robbery was wounded and taken to a hospital. The robbery victim’s name has not been released.

Lanier said Jones was related to at least one member of the group attempting the robbery. She declined to elaborate, citing the investigation.

In a news release issued the day after Alston’s death, police said a preliminary investigation of the case “revealed that this homicide may have occurred as a result of an armed carjacking.”

The initial account said that officers from the city’s 7th Police District were sent to the 4300 block of Fourth Street to investigate a report of a shooting in the Washington Highlands area.

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Video: The Chief on the Charges >>>

  • Angel_kincaid_park_2014_max50


    over 4 years ago


    If this Officer is in fact guilty this is very sad. It is what the Community perceives that can make the whole department look bad. Its unfortunate that when things like this happen the public will decide that all cops must be dirty verses one cop was bad.
    So sorry to hear of this news. If the Officer is guilty he is a disgrace and should get the MAX!

  • Angel_kincaid_park_2014_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Wow! I've never heard of police Chief just putting that information out there.
    This is an open investigation and very concerning that some of this could have been misleading.
    I would think it would be Hush! Until the investigation is closed. INTERESTING!
    Hope it all works out

  • Car6_max50


    over 4 years ago


    I hope the chief is right...

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago


    Well hes not an officer, he just a thug with a badge shame on him and as we all know this wont reflect on the good officer of DC they did there job and the perp was caught. good job DCPD

  • Aaa_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Do the crime, do the time

  • 450312-r1-12-12_013_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Natalie I dig it! you are right too much info lacking and the chief should have just said the matter is being investigated. She muddied the waters and the lawyers are going to have a field day with her statement.

  • Chesty_max50


    over 4 years ago


    The Chief of Police, any Chief of Police, should not speak in public out of anger. It sounds like that is what is happening here and it is a very bad idea. Doing so can result in bad information going out as "Fact" or true and valid information being corrupted. This is an on-going investigation, so mouths should be shut right now with the eyes and ears open!

    Nathalie, Dig? Did you say dig?? How groovy, I thought I was the only one who talked that way anymore!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago


    seems to me, the cheifs kind of quick to hang the officer out to dry. i hope its not true.good luck on getting a fair trial, after her comments.

  • Jegg_max50


    over 4 years ago


    I am also glad to see that almost everyone agrees that this article was poorly written. It was not even in chronological order, and does not give solid information. Basic writing skills include that when you make a statement, you then prove your point. I dig the fact that this is an open investigation and not all information is publicly available, but this article was probably better off not being written at all, or at least not published.

    So the only thing I got out of it pertaining to the officer was that: (1) He was in the area before the crime occurred, (2) He was related to one of the suspects, and (3) He ran when shots were fired. These facts, in and of themselves do not, IMHO, give rise to probable cause for Felony Murder, even as an accessory. I don't see any evidence given that he was a lookout. Too many facts are missing.

    Oh, and why yes, I used the word "dig." ;-P

  • Dsc_0344_max50


    over 4 years ago


    In reading everyone else's comments, I am glad to see that I am not the only one who is lost with lack of real information in this article. Either way, I don't see a Chief of a police department making such a comment unless it has been fully validified.

  • Thinker_max50


    over 4 years ago


    While the article may be poorly written, I'm sure the police department conducted a thorough investigation before charging one of their own and the Chief making her statement.

    With that said, I will reserve judgement as all are innocent until proven guilty, but if guilty this is a complete disgrace to the badge, our profession, and the oath of office this officer and all the rest of us swore to uphold, and he should receive the maximum punishment allowed...

  • On_the_job_002_max50


    over 4 years ago


    There is a lot of missing information, but the story so far dosen't sound good. I'll wait for more information.

  • Quickley-b240_max50


    over 4 years ago


    As stated by others, this article lacks much information. If this Officer is guilty he deserves what he gets. It makes us all look bad.

  • Sheriff_3_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Wow, this gives us all a bad rap... If they find he is guilty I hope they make an example of him...

  • Anonymous-killer-whale-232189_1__max50


    over 4 years ago


    Like the D.C. chief said, he's a bad apple. Even though the story is woefully lacking in detail, it seems there is enough undisclosed info for the investigators to arrest and charge him.

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