RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – We've uncovered some good news for a notoriously violent part of the city. In the first four months of the year, Richmond's East End saw only one homicide. A decade ago, that number would have been much higher.
You may remember Gary Green, the beloved Short Pump Martin's employee who was shot during a robbery in Mosby Court. He died three days later.
Since then it has been quiet. Green's is the only homicide East End detectives have had to investigate.
That number set a new record. The previous low was back in 2009 when there were four homicides in the first four months of the year.
We did the math and we're now closing in on 100 days without a murder there.
"I think that's great," exclaimed Alice Harris.
It's something the 30 year resident never thought she'd see. Almost two years ago, Harris gave us a description of frightening nights during her early years in the East End.
"When I lived in the Chimborazo area, it was really, you know, some nights you had to get on the floor because the gunshots would be so rampant," she explained.
Now she said it's a completely different picture. In fact, when we met her Wednesday afternoon, she had just returned from a walk to the store alone.
"You feel safer," she said. "You get to know some people and they look out for you."
Harris credits the police.
"If they're out walking the beats, it makes you feel safer," she told us.
Alamo BBQ owner Chris Davis agreed. He opened his Church Hill restaurant two years ago and now knows his beat officers by name.
"Those guys are invaluable to the community," he said. "They're a phone call away. Half the time you can flag them down."
He's hoping the trend means good things for the area.
"It brings people in," he thought. "People consider coming up here to eat. They consider coming up here to shop at our stores, to purchase homes over here, to bring back this historic neighborhood."
For now, only time will tell.
Detectives are still investigating Green's homicide case. So far this year, Richmond as a whole has seen 11 murders