Be safe

Two friends were robbed in Midtown last Thursday night.

It was early: around 9 p.m., while walking home after dinner. And suddenly: A man ran at them, brandishing a revolver in their faces, yelling to get down on their hands and knees, empty their pockets of phones and wallets. A nightmare.

This was the 16th reported robbery in the central city in the month (as of December 20). Merry Christmas. According to data with Sacramento County, about 35 percent of all robberies involve a firearm. Ugh.

What's worrisome as well is that six days earlier, at nearly the same spot, yet another robbery occurred, this time on a Saturday just before midnight.

The grid has seen an uptick in crime recently. Police data confirms all sorts of hellish transgressions: Since October 1, there have been 41 reported robberies, including four within a 400-foot radius of my apartment, plus 361 thefts; 349 cases of breaking and entering; 109 crimes against property; and 75 assaults. And a homicide. Again, those are just the reported incidents.

The easy, sane thing to think when someone harms friends and neighbors is that it's just a blip. That it's still safe to walk the dog before bed, or stroll home late after dinner and drinks.

But is it? The city's database doesn't show a ton of crime in East Sacramento, Land Park or McKinley Park. In fact, since October 1, those hoods have been devoid of robberies—zero!

Yes, the central city's restaurants and bars and clubs and nightlife are awesome. You're welcome. But in 2013, the region needs to come together to figure out ways to help out with this crime problem, and not just in the central city.

Because this sucks.