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FATAL FLAWS

Three Names Behind the Case Numbers

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By Cheryl W. Thompson
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, December 3, 2000

The public seldom gets the opportunity to look at any of the case files of the 1,500 unsolved slayings that occurred in the District of Columbia over the last 10 years. Because they are open cases, police do not make the files public and generally do not answer questions about them.

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The Washington Post gained rare access this summer to 20 cases that were open in three police districts. Several of the cases illustrate the problems with fundamental police work that Chief Charles H. Ramsey refers to as "basic blocking and tackling." Three stand out.

HOMICIDE NO. 96-693: `My Boyfriend is Beating Me Up'

At 1:51 a.m. on June 20, 1996, the 911 call crackled over the D.C. police communications airwaves:

"Can I have the police at 3707 New Hampshire Avenue, please?" a frantic Jacqueline Glover asked. "My boyfriend is beating me up.... And he hit me with the hammer.... And this is not the first time."

Twenty-nine minutes passed before D.C. officers arrived, according to internal police records obtained by The Post. Fourth District officer Evans Carter knocked on the front door of Glover's apartment in Northwest. No one answered. He asked a dispatcher to call Glover's home.

"As I stood by the front door I could hear the phone inside the residence continue to ring," Carter said in a sworn affidavit this year. "The dispatcher advised me that no one was answering. I once again knocked on the door and checked around the back for any point of entry. After several minutes of this I cleared the run and advised the dispatcher that the female was unable to be located and contacted."

Two days later, Glover's decomposing, 6-foot corpse was found sprawled in a pool of blood in the bathroom. She was 30, a bubbly woman who enjoyed dancing in nightclubs and shopping at outlet malls. Her black-and-gray painted fingernails were broken, one of many signs of a struggle. The telephone receiver rested on her lower left leg. She had been beaten and shot in the arm and chest.

The only suspect was her boyfriend of four months, Patrick Hewitt. He was possessive and hotheaded, Glover's friends say, and she had said he beat her. A friend said he saw Hewitt point a gun at Glover and tell her: "I will shoot you. I will kill you."

Still, it took police three months to get an arrest warrant for him.

"You've got to gather enough facts to get an arrest warrant," said Detective Brett Smith, who is investigating the case.

Smith said he was the lead detective on the case for the first 10 to 12 hours and then was removed for "internal political reasons." After several months, the case was reassigned to him. Asked if he knew whether police were searching for Hewitt immediately after the slaying, Smith said, "I don't know."

Within a month, Hewitt fled to London, where he met Lorraine Stamp, a big-boned Jamaican woman in her thirties, at a reggae party. They lived together for four years in Stamp's cramped four-room, government-funded apartment in South London with her son, Tevin, now 4.


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