It was close to quitting time and District of Columbia police officer Gregory McClure was ending a week on the midnight shift with a flourish early Saturday morning.
McClure, whose total of 129 arrests in nine months last year was tops in the crime-ridden 3rd District, was booking yet another disorderly conduct suspect when a burglary call crackled across a radio in the district stationhouse at 1624 V St. NW.
A robbery was in progress right across the street, at 1615 V St., the dispatcher said. McClure, who had checked his revolver while booking the suspect--a standard police procedure--rushed unarmed across the street.
In front of the house he met a knife-wielding man who apparently had just broken into the home and stabbed an elderly couple. After a short chase, McClure wrestled the man to the ground on the V Street sidewalk, and snapped on a set of handcuffs. He recovered a six-inch knife that had a badly bent blade.
According to police, the intruder had entered the home through a skylight shortly after 4 a.m., and was confronted by the occupants of the home, Willie Goldston, 70, and his wife, Mary, 69, in a second-floor hallway. The man stabbed Willie Goldston several times in the back and chest, and Mary Goldston once in the stomach, police said.
Somehow Willie Goldston hit his attacker with a chair, and one of the couple called the police 911 emergency number, police said.
Police said they charged John V. Jenkins, 36, of 307 Parkland Pl. SE, with first-degree burglary while armed in the incident. He was being held at D.C. Jail yesterday pending arraignment today.
Mary Goldston was reported in good condition yesterday at Washington Hospital Center. Willie Goldston underwent surgery yesterday afternoon at the same hospital, officials said. His condition was listed as fair.
Lt. James Dotson, a 3rd District duty officer yesterday, credited McClure's alertness for his high arrest total, including this latest.
"He's always paying attention; he's just the kind of person that would lead in that kind of thing," Dotson said.