Three Weeks, Three Armed Robberies in Salem

Our readers have shared their opinions - to what do you attribute Salem's sudden uptick in armed robberies?

Over the last three weeks, local police officers have responded to three armed robberies in downtown Salem.

Two of the armed robberies occurred in the same Norman Street plaza, first at 7-Eleven on Nov. 19; and then at Georgia's Pizza this past Sunday night.

The latest occurred at a second-floor apartment on Prince Street, where a tenant told police she was robbed at gunpoint by two men on Monday.

So, we have to ask, what's going on with all these robberies?

Does this growing trend change your perception of Salem? Do you think the pressue of the holiday season has something do with it?

Over the last three weeks we've received some of the following comments from our readers:

  • John Merrett: 23 million women own firearms in America and this is why. Crime is on the rise in Salem, so take steps to protect you and those you care about. Don't be a victim of someones violent recklessness.
  • John Andrews: That is a real shame and I hope the guy is aprehended, the family that runs Georgia's are some of the sweetest people I've met in town. I was there Sunday too, man that could have gotten ugly.
  • Georgia: What a scary thought! Violet and her amazing family did not deserve this and I hope they find the robber.
  • Letty C: I am so glad to hear no one was hurt! They are such hard working and kind people! It's also very frightening because I live very close to that corner and to know weapon-carrying thieves are running around when I am potentially out walking is terrifying. How about.a little extras police presence, please?!
  • Jenni Schillizzi: Could someone please tell me what's going on in this beautiful town of ours? Why is it that the criminal element is coming HERE and treating Salem like it's Newark, NJ??? If the Mayor is so concerned with bringing in more residents and revenue, the least she could do is bring back the police officers who were let go do to cutbacks, so that criminals don't feel it's alright to commit felonies here! A stronger police presence would make them think twice about coming here!
  • Bill: Agree - seems clear the violent crime is getting worse each year under Driscoll. Maybe more focus on that and the schools and less on tourism and solar garbage cans.
  • john: It's the shelter. Nobody wants to admit it but that't the problem. It attracts unwanted people to Salem by allowing them to sober up once a week and get in for a meal and maybe clean up. If not that,they can always sleep at the police station. The shelter has a worthy purpose but it is not perfect. Drunks passed out all over town,needles found on the streets,it's a recipie for disaster.
  • John Merrett "An armed man is a citizen,...an unarmed man is a subject.." and he's also a crime victim.
  • Jen: I agree with John about the shelters/sober houses. I work for a lab that does drug testing for those places and they get away with a lot. They're not even getting help for their addictions.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments section below.

Shava Nerad December 08, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Seems to me the shelter has both a curfew and a no weapons policy. And, people who are making (in) decent money dealing drugs and robbing people can afford to live somewhere more private to suit their entrepreneurial pursuits. Are you sure you people just aren't blowing smoke? Maybe you should call Lifebridge and arrange a visit. My church cooks dinner there once a month. So might yours - most of the local faith communities pitch in. You might find your heart growing a few sizes larger this holiday season. Who knows? Might suit you.
John Merrett December 08, 2012 at 05:24 PM
When good people see this, by good people I mean the kind who are good neighbors and friends, who work and pay taxes and who's kids go to school and who are involved in the community,- those are the people you want in your city to stay or move into, but this kind of press will turn those people away, not because they are uncaring, but because they understand what makes a community and they won't find it here.
Deb December 08, 2012 at 05:31 PM
The shelter has good rules, but it appears they aren't always followed to the T; and even if they are, it still attracts a bad element. With all due respect - Here's a little experiment. Do a search in the local papers for "homeless" and "56 Margin St". Note that most (all?) of the hits aren't feel good stories. Good chance you'd get fewer hits in Salem if the shelter was located elsewhere? Ya think?
jason wert December 09, 2012 at 07:52 AM
John for once I agree w u, as this kind of activity grows n becomes commonplace throughout the town, those who are honest & work hard to provide for their familys, those who care about their neighbors & keeping their communitys safe for their children, they will leave. The crime & the drugs will take over, n good people wont come to salem, not to live & sooner or later, not to visit. Businesses will leave, jobs wil leave, tourist income will leave. I'm all for helping those in need, but some people are in need because they choose to be, because it is easier for them to get through life scamming, taking handouts & stealing from those of us who work hard for the little bit we do have. Most people can't see the difference between those who need help & those want to take whatevers free
marc bowlen December 10, 2012 at 02:53 AM
All this low income housing is for 1 reason! To keep The Democratic Party in power as it gets the same dirty people elected year after year, The solution to the problems are term limits, less government jobs, elimination of Unions that are affiliated with civil service jobs, and anyone that is on welfare or sec 8 housing be required to pay back the tax payers every penny they have taken when they get off assistance in the form of community service or money taken from their pay once they get back on their feet! There shall be no lifetime sec 8 tenants or welfare, they shall be required to be enrolled in job training programs when on assistance ( unless they are legally disabled) having kids to obtain welfare is not a disability, it is a 3rd world way of life!


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