Private security on the DTM? Local firm, for now, is doing it for free in the wake of the Hannah Graham abduction

Downtown Mall store owners and visitors might have noticed a new security presence on the DTM. That’s because Jim Traynor, owner of Crozet-based Traynor Security & Investigations, has taken it upon himself to add additional Mall security in the wake of the abduction of UVA student Hannah Graham.

“ No one hired my firm to provide security to the Downtown Mall,” says Traynor. “  I did it on my own because I feel they should have security there.  Especially after the Hannah Graham abduction.”

Traynor says that he and his officers have been getting good feedback from store owners, restaurant owners, and pedestrians about the volunteer patrols, with many saying that “it’s been long overdue to have security at the Downtown Mall.”

“Unfortunately, I can’t provide the Security for free much longer,” says Traynor. “ Even though I’m not getting paid by anyone, I have to pay my officers.”

When asked, Charlottesville Police Chief Tim Longo said he was unaware of any private security presence on the DTM.

“I have offered my services to them [the police] and they told me no they don’t need it,” said Traynor.

At the time of this post, Longo had not yet responded to questions about the appropriateness and/or legality of Traynor’s efforts. Stay tuned.

Zombie Apocalypse coming to the DTM

zvilleSeriously. They’re coming. On Saturday, October 25th, the Downtown Mall of Charlottesville will be ground zero for Z-VILLE: an experiment in total zombie domination.

Participating stores on Charlottesville’s historic Downtown pedestrian mall will zombify their staffs – posting the official Z-VILLE warning in their windows – and bracing for the human stampede.

Local shoppers are warned to get out of their houses and come to the Downtown Mall to experience this (hopefully) once in a lifetime zombie simulation.

Out of town shoppers are advised that this is never-ever going to happen in their town in ten lifetimes, so they better get their families out of Dodge and over to Charlottesville, VA on October 25th.

Other undead activities during the weekend are the annual Danger. Zombies. 5k Run. on Sunday morning. Plus, at the Paramount on Sunday night: Ghostbusters and the London National Theater’s Frankenstein.

Spontaneous zombie generation is encouraged. So shoppers, too, are invited to participate in the mall carnage.

for more information contact primary instigator:  Brian Wimer brian@amoebafilms.tv

Take Note: shows at Threepenny Cafe through October 26

SGsJ0lzqr86d5WAYpQzBPAU9KSG2PiwavdZzV2Scjqv2UswmQz2VbQunyL17eoI33xiEpenZuv1t8xzq6Qh9p8h_93gYb_h8fl7blY77BoYlGOGmBEoD1CfJBKzwMOu6VI5EoGLRz2nixTMA0z93YOTN2eNNEgYFQynin-U=s0-d-e1-ftEvent Times
Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday – 8pm
Friday – 10pm
Saturday – (Early) 1pm, (Late) 10pm

Thurs. Oct. 9th – Paulo Franco
Genre(s) – Country / Blues / Rock

Fri. Oct. 10th – Moon
Genre(s) – Rock / Pop / Covers

Sat. Oct. 11th
Early Show
Bill Staton, Mike Poznansky, Oona Love
Genre(s) – Folk / Americana / Singer-Songwriter
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DTM more dangerous for women than UVA? Stats, evidence suggest otherwise

USA today shotDTM safety has again become the focus of national news in light of the disappearance of Hannah Graham, who was last seen outside Tempo restaurant on September 13. A recent article in USAToday ran with the theme of “differing sense of security” between UVA campus and the Downtown Mall area, suggesting the DTM is far more dangerous.

“It’s never been safe down here late at night,” says a Mall waitress. “People think that because the campus is so safe and secure, it’s safe everywhere in Charlottesville. It’s just not.”

Really? USA Today seems to have neglected the recently released UVA crime data for 2013, during which there were 15 reported rapes and fondlings on grounds. Past reports say there were 14 in 2012, 14 in 2011, and 17 reported rapes in 2010. In addition, UVA is currently under federal investigation for allegedly mishandling the investigation of a 2011 rape of a third-year UVA student. Heck, there’s even a website called UVA Victims of Rape. Oh, and as you may recall, the same weekend Hannah Graham disappeared, UVA police reported there were two reported sexual assaults, one near Wertland Street, and another on nearby 15th Street NW.

While current crime stats for the DTM weren’t immediately available, this reporter viewed crime stats on the Mall area for 2013 last year, and while there were a number of public disturbances, simple assaults, and other minor crimes, rapes were non-existent.

Not sure where this “the Mall is dangerous” stuff is coming from, as the statistical evidence clearly doesn’t back that notion up. Maybe its because the Mall is an urban setting, with different kinds of people? Who knows. But when it comes to violence against women around here, we’d say the New York Times got it right.

Vintage DTM: Main Street 100 years ago

Main Street, Looking East:  This image is from a photo postcard showing Main Street in Charlottesville as seen from the base of Vinegar Hill over 100 years ago.   Interestingly, Main Street was first paved with bricks. It was a dirt street prior to this.  Asphalt would come a few years later and then Main Street would return to bricks in the 1970s as the pedestrian mall we know today.  An electric trolley (seen here) ran down the street in the early 20th Century and continued all the way to the University.  Today, this is the west end of the Downtown Mall. The brick building on the left with three windows on the second story is where Mudhouse coffee shop is today.  This postcard was mailed from Charlottesville to Fishersville, VA on June 4, 1910 at 4:30 pm. This postcard is just one of 100s in the collection of former Charlottesville Mayor Dave Norris.  Dave will be joining C’ville Images next Thursday at C’ville Coffee to share some of the amazing photos and stories from his collection.  Details at www.cvilleimages.com

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Take Note: shows at Rapture through November 1

RAPTURE-9-30Wed. Oct. 1st – Southern Belles
Genre(s): Rock / Jam / Funk

Sat. Oct. 4th – Duck Brothers
Genre(s): Hip Hop / Top 40 / Mash Ups

Mon. Oct. 6th – ATM Unit
Genre(s): Funk / Jazz / Fusion

Wed. Oct. 8th – Erin & The Wildfire
w/ Midnight Snack
Genre(s): Blues / Rock / Soul

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