Annapolis Sunday Capital (Newspaper) - November 17, 2013, Annapolis, Maryland
A Capital-Gazette Newspaper ® — Annapolis, MD
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Did criminal monitoring system fail stabbing victim?
Despite murder and police shooting, program hailed for cutting crime
By SARA BLUMBERG [email protected]
Kedrick Tooles watched as others in the auditorium were handcuffed.
Was he next?
The day we lost
50 years later, area residents look back
By TIM PRUDENTE [email protected]
The week of Nov. 17, 1963:
Students rehearsed “Bye Bye Birdie” at Annapolis High School. The city sought a Christmas tree for Main Street. Sevema Park housewives held a variety show.
Then, on Nov. 22, shortly after 1:30 p.m. local time, news bulletins broke on TV to tell us President John F. Kennedy had been shot and killed in Dallas. Maybe you heard it from a tearful Walter Cronkite or from a tearful friend or parent.
In Annapolis, “Bye Bye Birdie” was canceled. A bell rang at St. John’s College for each year Kennedy lived. And a gun fired a farewell salute at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Where were you?
As the anniversary approaches Friday, we asked readers to share memories of the day we lost our president and the days that followed.
• More stories, photos and video online at www.capitalgazette.com.
• Rob Hiaasen remembers, Page D1
Did he miss a phone call? Was there a traf fic violation?
“The smallest thing will get you locked up," the Annapolis man said.
Tooles was at the mandatory probation meeting as one of 189 Anne Arundel County men and women in the Violence Prevention Initiative, a state program designed to control some of the community’s most dangerous criminals.
The VPI started in Baltimore and expanded to Anne Arundel County in 2007 as part of
Gov. Martin O’Malley’s attempt to improve communication between county and state law enforcement agencies on the subject of violent offenders.
Five years later, police credit the program with helping bring violent crime in the county down to some of its lowest levels in years.
But on Sept. 10, one of the offenders put on probation through the VPI, Annapolis resident William Brown Jr., repeatedly stabbed his girlfriend, Ronnesha Simms, outside her apartment. Brown was repeatedly shot and
mortally wounded by a city police officer, but survived long enough to stab Simms to death.
Bonita Sims, Simms’ aunt, said that since the VPI program is supposed to have tough monitoring, she wonders why no one noticed that Brown was troubled. Sims said her fam ily and neighbors suspect Brown was high on drugs the night of the murder.
“I feel like the program failed to protect my family,” she said. “I hope they tested him for drugs.”
(See VPI, Page A8)
Courtesy of Cecil Stoughton/John F Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston
President John F. Kennedy and first lady Jacqueline Kennedy arrive at Love Field in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963.
Crow’s feet and gray hair
He’s the youngest president ever elected, teachers said.
He’s handsome and Catholic, teachers said. He has a beautiful wife, Jackie.
Lucinda Edinberg was in sixth grade about 55 miles west of Dallas that morning. Today she works at a St. John’s College art gallery.
On Nov. 22, she wore the yellow sweater of her Catholic school, which was near the former Carswell Air Force Base. The base was near Dallas’ twin city of Fort Worth, where John F. Kennedy, on his swing through Texas, spent the night of Nov. 21.
Kennedy and his party were to go to the
Tudy Richardson will never forget the I blue of Kennedy’s eyes and the pink of tf Jackie’s suit.
She had just learned to wear clothes like Jackie. She was 18, a steelworker’s daughter from West Virginia dreaming of glamour.
She carried her lunch to the curb that
Air Force base for the short flight to Dallas’
Love Field. Lucinda’s father wore his dress blues. He worked at the base and might see the handsome president.
At the school, teachers walked students to the boulevard to wave.
The Kennedy car appeared and slowed.
The students, massed along the boulevard
day to glimpse the first lady. Richardson’s girlfriends — other typists at the Lone Star Gas Co. — came too. For about six months, she’d lived in Dallas with her brother’s family, learning to wear makeup like his wife, a lean Texan with frosted hair.
The limousine appeared.
Richardson waved. She shouted.
The limousine passed so close she saw Kennedy’s eyes. “Stunningly blue,” she
Lucinda Edinberg was 11 when she watched President Kennedy drive past on the morning of the assassination.
in their yellow sweaters, were supposed to sing “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling.” Lucinda didn’t know the words. Some sang “The Yellow Rose of Texas.”
It was a cold and windy day.
She remembers that the president looked old, with crow’s feet and hair that had gone gray at the temples.
She remembers Jackie’s hair flying in the wind.
remembers a half-century later.
Richardson sits in her Annapolis home and says it was a short walk back to the office that day.
Once she was inside, shouting began. Then police cars, sirens blaring.
“For a long time afterward,” she said, “I could not stand sirens.”
(See JFK, Page All)
Monday: Showers. C2
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