Ohio Supreme Court kills residency requirements

Although we’re sure to see an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court within days, the Ohio Supreme Court just dealt another blow to Dayton finances:

The Ohio Supreme Court this morning upheld a 2006 state law that bars cities from enforcing residency rules.

Writing for the 5-2 majority, Justice Paul Pfeifer dismissed arguments from Akron and Lima attorneys who said the General Assembly violated cities’ home rule authority.

via Ohio Supreme Court rules against city residency requirements – Inside Cleveland City Hall – cleveland.com.

Don’t expect a mass exodus from Dayton right now- city workers will have a hard time in today’s economy finding buyers for their homes.

Look to those who have school-age kids- or soon-to-be-school age, and renters- to be the first to go. Of the 2,500 employees of the city, this will probably lose us less than 10% right now.

It will be interesting to see how much it costs the city for the firing of Victor Pate who moved to Jefferson when the lower court made its ruling.

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45 Responses

  1. Dani June 10, 2009 / 11:41 am
    My youngest child will be a sophmore at Fairborn this year.  The city has 3 more years to come around or my partner and I will be moving, too.  We have lived in this city for over a decade and for every step we take forward…well you know how the saying goes.  This is a chance our city government could use to try to make Dayton an appealing place to live.  I know Dayton is in desperate need for jobs, but we also need to focus on making our neighborhoods more appealing and safer places to live.  Safety services have already been cut, with more anticipated.  This will contribute to the further decline and not a rebuilding of Dayton
  2. Owen June 10, 2009 / 12:53 pm
    A recent suvery done by Wright State grad students found that just over 42% of city employees would eventually  move out if the residency requirement was lifted. Since Detroit lifted their requirement five years ago, close to 30% of city employees have moved out and studies done in other cities on this subject seem to back these results. In light of this, a loss of “less than 10%” seems like wishful thinking, especially since a fair number of employees in the WSU survey said they would vacate their homes before they sold them.
  3. CityEmployee June 10, 2009 / 12:53 pm
    “Don’t expect a Mass exodus”
     I agree, as a city employee, I hear the grumbling that goes on.  But, a large number of us already took matters into our hands and moved to annexed areas like Huber Heights, Northridge, Fairborn and so on.  Now, what will this ruling do to our property values?
  4. Larkin June 10, 2009 / 2:30 pm
    City Employee, 
    If you abandoned the city that employees you and feeds your family and pays your house payment in a place outside the city, then I hope your property values go in the toilet. I would be embarrassed to take money from the City and not have the balls to live within the city limits. I certainly hope that the city will give hiring preferences to those who live in the city and that they will be extra diligent during performance reviews for city employees who do not. 

    And yes, I live in the city, on the west side of downtown. And yes, my child goes to a Dayton Public School. 

  5. Gene June 10, 2009 / 2:51 pm
    True, the city employs him or her, but he or she feeds his or her family, he or she pays his or her mortgage, not the city. He or she is not owned by the city and he or she should live wherever he or she wants to live.

    Preferences on where someone lives is discrimination.

    DE just got his place broken into, some people hate that shit. It is less likely to happen in Centerville or Oakwood or Beavercreek.  Just a fact.

    Dayton needs to improve itself one neighborhood at a time. South Park seems a good place to start.

  6. Larkin June 10, 2009 / 2:57 pm
    Gene, dear. 

    It is NOT less likely to happen in Centerville, Oakwood or Beavercreek. In fact, those very cities have higher incidents of break-ins, burglaries and home invasions. Why? Because being materialistic suburbanites, they have STUFF. 

    It’s just white folks kidding themselves. 

    How can someone be a good employee working in good faith for the City of Dayton if they won’t even live here?  Give me a break.

    This is not the first idiotic decision the State Supreme Court has handed down and it won’t be the last.

  7. Jeff June 10, 2009 / 3:10 pm
    I don’t get that to be a dedicated city employee you have to live there.  That makes no sense, it is not as if a policeman is less concerned about preventing crime and catching criminals if it isn’t his neighborhood.  Would firefighters not risk their lives to save trapped occupants because they are not “his” neighbors.  It’s a silly stand to take.  The city is changing, not for the better.  Those that can move, will.  It has more to do with having the ability to send your children to schools that are safe and that provide a quality education.  It has to do with buying a home and actually seeing it increase in value as the years pass.  Ending residency may help those who have children with special needs or spouses that have hour long commutes move closer to the places they receive therapy or go to work.  It will not be the end of Dayton, most will have to sell their homes before they leave, all will still pay income taxes.  The argument to keep residency is archaic and has prevented more diversity than it has created.  The State Supreme Court realized that freedom is for everyone, city employee or not.
  8. Gene June 10, 2009 / 3:11 pm
    City of Dayton will not challenge decision, according to DDN. And according to police statistics you are dead wrong Larkin.

    The Court made the right decision.

    City employees should live wherever they want – and it is not a white thing. Why do more and more “black” people move to the suburbs? bc they are sick of crime and crappy schools.

    I live in Dayton. I can handle the crime. I can handle a break in. Some people can’t. But to make it LAW if GD MF Re-cock-u-lous!

  9. Jeff June 10, 2009 / 3:55 pm
    Don’t expect a mass exodus from Dayton right now- city workers will have a hard time in today’s economy finding buyers for their homes.

    City workers will have  a hard time selling even in a good economy.  The reason why is that very few people want to live in the city.   I guess they could move out and just rent their old houses.

  10. Gene June 10, 2009 / 4:10 pm
    Dayton needs to do something, real soon, real fast.

    Jobs are leaving, people like the suburbs more than the city. I say eliminate all taxes on businesses and watch a sh*t pile of businesses, large and small, want to relocate or start up in the city of Dayton.

    It will never happen, so I say goodbye Dayton. Dayton dies a slow and painful death.


    Give this a shot, if this does not work then change back. But we will never know if Dayton just keeps sitting on it’s hands.

  11. David Esrati June 10, 2009 / 5:01 pm

    Gene- what taxes are you talking about? Property taxes are county. What taxes “on business”- payroll? Unemployment?
    Please be specific.

  12. Jeff June 10, 2009 / 6:10 pm
    Odd, being a city of Dayton employee who thought that when this day came I would be so overjoyed that I would stick a sign in my yard and move the same day.  Now, instead, I don’t think I will move, certainly not within the next five years.  I think what I didn’t like was being told where I had to live.  Now that it is my option, I find that I am rooting for this city.  It has been good to me and my family and for that, I will stay and hope that we can dig ourselves out of what we are in.
  13. David Esrati June 10, 2009 / 6:35 pm

    @Jeff- it is time to root for our city. We’ve been gettin hit with haymakers.
    Time to fight back.

  14. Brad June 10, 2009 / 7:39 pm
    Very cool Jeff.  I pretty much feel the same way.  I’m certainly not moving anytime soon.  Yet it’s nice to have that weight off our shoulders.  I’m rooting for this city just as much as anyone.
  15. Patrick Jones June 10, 2009 / 9:09 pm
    I don’t see how there could be any appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.  This seems to be entirely an issue of Ohio law and the Ohio Constitution — no federal question involved.
  16. DB June 11, 2009 / 12:37 am
    Larkin, dear.
          Let me get this straight, because I own “stuff” like a house, car,computer, clothes and live in the suburbs that makes me materialistic? I guess you city dwellers must own completely different “stuff”, or are just narrow-minded and arrogant.
         Those cities do not have higher incidents of property crimes, just look at the facts below. Dayton is a very high crime city, and consistently ranks among the most dangerous in the country. Sounds like you are kidding yourself.

    Crime Rates
    Dayton, Ohio
    Beavercreek, Ohio
    United States

    Violent Crime

    Property Crime

    Crime Rates
    Oakwood, Ohio
    Dayton, Ohio
    United States

    Violent Crime

    Property Crime

    Crime Rates
    Dayton, Ohio
    Centerville, Ohio
    United States

    Violent Crime

    Property Crime

    The crime indices range 1-10. A higher number corresponds with more crime. Our crime rates are based on FBI data. SOURCE-http://www.bestplaces.net/crime/

  17. Jeff June 11, 2009 / 4:52 am
    What would be interesting is to see the geography of residence for those apprehended for property crime in the suburbs, to confirm or refute the belief that the cirminal element is coming from Dayton city and preying on the suburbs.
  18. Gene June 11, 2009 / 10:35 am
    Tough call. It needs to be looked at on all six sides, not just two.

    Most likely, Kettering or Centerville (or wherever) experience crime and the majority of all crimes are committed by people who live in that particular part of town. The second group most likely would be from neighboring suburb – Kettering crimes are most likely committed by Kettering residence then by a neighboring city, like Dayton or Centerville. Right?

    So the question really becomes this – or should be this – How much crime is committed in Dayton by people who live in the suburbs (total incidents and per capita data.)

    My guess is that Kettering experiences most crime by its own people, then Dayton people, then a small amount (no statistical significance) from other surrounding areas (like Centerville or Oakwood or Beavercreek – all which border Kettering.)

    But does Dayton have the same fate, in terms of total crime and by per capita. In other words, Most crime in Dayton is done by people who live in Dayton, and the second group in Dayton would be a much much smaller percent from outsiders (like Kettering) If fact, people in the suburbs do not commit crime in Dayton as compared to the other way around (Dayton people committing crime in the suburbs.)

    In the suburbs the percentage of crime committed by people who live in Dayton would be significant ( 20%, for example, and simply a guess) while the percentage of any single suburb or the aggregate of all suburbs that commit crime in Dayton is so so much smaller, say 3% for the aggregate, therefore 3% spread to 15 suburban areas.

    Montgomery county is roughly 550k people, city of Dayton 155k people. So I guess we see total crime for Montgomery county and see where these folks live and, bam, you have your answer, or at least going towards the answer.

    But, of course, a lot of crime is committed in all areas that is never solved, so it may be unfair to say Dayton criminals are more prevalent, they just may be stupid and get caught easier than the Suburban criminal. Who knows?

  19. CityEmployee June 11, 2009 / 10:48 am
    @ Larkin
    “I certainly hope that the city will give hiring preferences to those who live in the city and that they will be extra diligent during performance reviews for city employees who do not.”
    What does my place of residence have anything to do with my job performance?  Next time you call for Police, Fire or maybe even the Water Department for help, will it matter where they live?
     I’m staying, and so are my income taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, so don’t worry the free loaders will still get assistance.
  20. Gene June 11, 2009 / 12:00 pm
    It must be a liberal thing. I say live wherever you want to live.
  21. Victor June 11, 2009 / 12:04 pm
    Wha Sup (Not-So) Easy E (David Esrati)?
    I guess the possibility of me showing up at your annual winter house party is increasing.
    These past two years has been somewhat hell for myself-n-Family. I thought it would be beneficial to post my statement on your website, because your a cool activist and even if you & I don’t agree your intellectually entertaining. I did not ‘take on’ the Residency Issue for activist/political reasons. In fact I’ve been partial to having a Residency requirement for City employees; however:
    1) After witnessing the blatant elimination of City jobs that were replaced by private contractors who have no Residency Rule to contend.
    2) The selective ‘annexing’ of property outside of the City of Dayton proper and the mostly higher paid employees that lived in those areas.
    3) The second lost case in court by the City (2nd Court of Appeals)
    4) My personal financial crisis and private family matters
    I decided that it was best for me to take up residence in Jefferson Township (where the City of Dayton has an agreement to pick up residential trash). 
     I did everything by the book. I was not caught giving a false address and I submitted the proper forms prior to my move. I did not really believe the City would fire me. I was wrong.
      I’ve continuously involved myself with local/statewide/national activism. I love the City of Dayton and I would appear at Commission meetings, School Board meetings, Rallies, Debates, Etc. Depending on the final agreements, I may be back in Dayton doing those same activities, but at a greater intensity.
      Finally, I will continue to accuse the ones who I know are the real culprits responsible for the City of Dayton’s problems……the Citizens. Until Citizens remove their fear to confront a handful Corporate-Thugs and the hand-picked ‘elected’ officials, Dayton will continue to be free-lunch for lazy, lying anti-human beasts.
  22. Drexel Dave Sparks June 11, 2009 / 12:44 pm
    Why has Gary Leitzell been silent during these past two weeks? He should have had media events telling what he would have done, or do.

    Seems like if you can’t take advantage of a perfect time to get yourself a lot of attention for your ideas, what kind of leader will you be?

    Gary is a great guy, and since I know he reads this blog, I would like to know: What would you do Gary, and why aren’t you on the television every night? You could be.

    Peace and courage,


  23. Gene June 11, 2009 / 1:19 pm
    We need a heavy hitter. I said this on 01-01-09, and now more than ever it is true. Real leadership, a person with connections and money, someone who will bring jobs to Dayton.
    Bring jobs to Dayton and issues like the residency rule do not matter. It is just that simple.
  24. David Esrati June 11, 2009 / 3:45 pm

    Thanks for posting here.
    I’ve always known you to be a stand up guy- and that you had the law backing your move.
    The city fired you, without legal cause, and I imagine, we’ll be paying for it.
    There have been a lot of questionable outsourcings of services, as well as slush fund accounting practices. If elected, I’m going to make it difficult for this kind of BS to continue.
    I look forward to seeing you back in town.
    I’m sorry this has been tough on you and your family.

  25. Gene June 11, 2009 / 6:27 pm
    If elected………?………………… It should be “When Elected”,……….
  26. David Esrati June 11, 2009 / 7:30 pm

    Thanks Gene ;-) But that could be after I’ve run another 7 times…. if you believe what people say.

  27. Gary June 12, 2009 / 12:14 am
    For Drexel Dave and those of you who are interested in my thoughts on some of the recent events, this was my press release that was sent out on June 2, 2009.

    Concerning NCR’s relocation.

    The news of NCR’s relocation is surely saddening to our city. NCR has long been a strong community pillar and has made many contributions toward the well-being of Dayton by supporting arts, charities, parks and education. Their presence will be missed.
    However, the ingenuity, spirit of courage and innovation of the people that made this company so great remains here in our city. These virtues are what made NCR a leader in its market, and they are what will, once again, make Dayton a leader in the Miami Valley and beyond.
    As citizens, community leaders and business leaders, we must use this news to unify us and focus our efforts into developing new and creative ways of attracting businesses positioned in markets that will remain relevant for the next five decades and beyond in addition to supporting businesses already committed to Dayton. As your next mayor, it will be my top priority to make Dayton a haven for inventive small and large businesses alike while rallying the collective imagination and insight of the over 20 groups already committed to developing business in Dayton.
    This is not the final nail in the coffin for Dayton. Rather, this is the springboard we will use to capitalize on yet untapped potential of our great city as we adapt to a changing climate to make Dayton the city that we all know it can be.

    Gary Leitzell

    This is my comment regarding the Residency Ruling.

    People should be free to decide where they want to live.  I choose to live in Dayton. It is my desire to make Dayton the choice for everyone. For those of you living in Dayton,  a sincere thank you!

    Regarding the current state of the citys finances;

    Our city departments should have been developing strategies over the past several years that would generate revenue for the city. Such strategy should not include additional fees to water bills or additional taxes on the residents. Instead the strategy should include ways to attract people to Dayton from other states or countries as tourists first and then as potential residents or business entrepreneurs. Until people come here, they don’t know what they are missing

    I regularly post to my “Mayor’s Blog”http://www.daytonmayor.blogspot.comand Facebook. I also have my website http://www.daytonmayor.org which will be going through some changes.

  28. Larkin June 12, 2009 / 2:28 am
    Employers set all kinds of requirements for their employees. Disney won’t hire people who have more than one hole pierced in each ear. Some evangelist ministry in St. Louis (one of their employees is 0n trial for murdering his wife and children) won’t allow their employees to be divorced. (That issue gets a little sticky for monarchy, too.)  Girls who work at Hooters, well, you get the picture. 

    I don’t think it’s far-fetched to expect people to live in the municipality that they serve. We expect the Governor of Ohio to live in Ohio. We expect the President of the United States to live in the United States. We expect the Mayor of Dayton, and the Commission members to live in Dayton. Many people pitched an almighty fit because Jon Husted in fact, does NOT live in the district he claims to serve. Could he do a better job if he did? Sure.

    Jeff, if people choose not to live in Dayton out of fear and contempt, then yes, I don’t think that they would do as good a job in serving the citizens (that they fear and are contemptuous of) as those who choose to live here. If they have another compelling reason to live outside of the city, then of course they could be just as willing and able.  It really does depend on WHY they don’t live in Dayton. 

    DB, you do presume. Gene and I have tussled on this board for the better part of a year, and we have reached a kind of detente. I am always quite pleased to see his voice here, and when he is missing for long periods of time, I have even felt the twinge of concern. I can call him Dear if I want to. You cannot say the same for me. 

    Mark Twain famously attributed to Benjamin Disraeli the statement “There are three kinds of lies: Lies, damned lies and statistics.” Your little numerical charts mean nothing and your source is laughable. My source for local crime statistics is the Dayton Police Department compiled record of fact. A couple of people posted on David’s “Violated” entry about the rash of armed burglaries going on in Oakwood. Of course, if they’d happened in Dayton, it would be all over the evening news. 

    Yes, people who live in the suburbs are presumed to have more. After all, they have indulged in the luxury of paying twice or five times or ten times for their property what the equivalent property in downtown Dayton would sell for. I’ve been an invited guest in  my the homes of my neighbors. They don’t have a lot. Stuff, yes, but not a lot of stuff, not nearly the amount of stuff our suburban friends acquire. Is this a generalization? Sure. That doesn’t mean there isn’t truth in it. 

    How many iPods do you have, DB? How many cell phones? How many televisions? How many GPS units? How many laptops? How many Wii, or Playstations ? How many bangles and baubles, watches and trinkets? Crime happens everywhere, not just in cities. You’d have to be a pretty stupid robber not to realize that you’re likely to get a better haul in Centerville than you are in Fairview, for exposing yourself to the same amount of risk plus a bus ride. 

    I am neither narrow minded nor arrogant. I am an educated middle-aged woman, I have enjoyed a broad range of experiences on two continents, and I can engage in a lively exchange of ideas and opinions without stooping to name calling. I just don’t have much stomach for racism and cowardice, and how those two very things have brought this city to her knees.

  29. David Esrati June 12, 2009 / 6:01 am

    Jeff- there has been a lot of discussion over how different communities report to the FBI. The numbers, while useful for trending a city (if they don’t change their reporting) aren’t good for comparing one community to another.
    I don’t have time to do the digging to find the spat right now- but, please be aware, the “lies, damn lies and statistics” still applies. I posted this comment on your site too.
    And, the reports of a wave of break-ins in Oakwood has been coming in on the Violated post- so, I guess South Park (joked about as “Oakwood North“) is going through the same thing. Of course, the DDN has been mute about this “Crime wave” as it’s happening “under the dome*”
    * Oakwoodites like to think they live under a dome, in a perfect world- the High School paper is called “The Dome”

  30. Gene June 12, 2009 / 9:12 am
    The Oakwood crimes were reported on local TV.

    Just bc employers set guidelines for hiring people (like big tits at Hooters) does not make it right. We all know this.
    People in Dayton have plenty of stuff. Stuff is a BS measure of anything, you can’t take it with you. As for SP being Dayton North, now now. That is just plain silly. SP is Urban, Oakwood ain’t Urban. There is no parallel, and I would think people who live in SP would be offend by such comparisons. Urban folks like to be “Urban,” Oakwood folks don’t care too much for the Urban world. The Dome is the paper, and always had an negative inside joke kind of  feel to me. People who actually think it  is The Dome and the perfect world are long gone. Oakwood voted for Obama, believe it or not. Perfect World, one idea, same philosophy, well those days are gone.

    People in Dayton commit more crime than the rest of Montgomery County. Dayton also experiences more crime, per capita, than the rest of MC. Seriously, you have to be brain dead not to realize this.

    And when I am gone it is bc I am in Costa Rica. Or, on occasion, Toronto and Montreal. When I leave, I leave Dayton behind.

  31. Drexel Dave Sparks June 12, 2009 / 9:24 am
    Thanks Gary I saw that originally. But what I am referring to is more of a “Take the microphone” thing. Seek those TV people out. Have downloadable sound clips on your web  site for them to use if they want. Get aggressive brother!

    Have a great weekend too.


  32. Victor June 12, 2009 / 9:45 am
    The Cities (like Dayton) failed in their battle to keep Residency Rules because they did not address a very key issue in the Ohio Constitution’s Home Rule section. Safety is the key element. It was necessary for those municipalities to present statistical evidence those employees that did not reside in the city created an unsafe environment for citizens. This is a very key issue in the Home Rule section.
     I have been to many activist, volunteer and public forums that dealt directly with Dayton issues and I continue to witness individuals that make sacrifice for Dayton, yet reside outside of Dayton. I also have witnessed poor workmanship and unsafe conditions created by those who did not live in Dayton and had a anti-Dayton attitude. The solution is simple. Better management.
     As far as Dayton’s social struggles (crime, etc) there is greater need for cultivating ‘Grass-Roots’ activism. Educating the poor, frustrated and disillusioned victims within Dayton AND educating the misinformed populace outside of Dayton. Our Schools have been totally corrupted by corporate mischief making and profiteering. Education needs to be geared towards the conditions of the area, short/long term obstacles/solutions and social self-reliance. We need to stop believing that we need ‘jobs’ handed down from rich people. We can create our own wealth and sell it to the world, too, but we cannot do it with these greedy government-controlling corporations in the way.
  33. BSH June 12, 2009 / 3:27 pm
    My issue is this:  I’m responding to the comment by Larkin about crime NOT less likely to happen in the suburbs.  I don’t know the statistics but I do have a personal tragedy that I will openly share with you. 

    Fifteen years ago I was a victim of a violent crime in the city of Kettering.  A stranger broke into my apartment and raped me at knife point.  I know these things can happen anywhere.  I don’t need you to tell me as I know from first hand experience.  It did NOT happen because I was materialistic.  I was a broke 19 year old college student living in her first apartment and it was not my fault. Shame on you for insinuating that victims somehow bring tragedy and crime on themselves for the “stuff” they may or may not have. I was not at fault and will not allow anyone to place the blame on my shoulders.  I’m through with doubt on that. 

    I will also add this: my attacker was captured by heroic Kettering police officers (some of whom probably lived outside the city limits of Kettering, I didn’t ask as I really didn’t think it was important)! He is still in prison serving out the remainder of his sentence.  Unfortunatley he is currently being evaluated for parole.  According to his expected post-release address listed with the Ohio Department of Corrections if released this repeat sexual predator will be moving back to Dayton to live with his parents – just 1.4 miles from the home that my husband and I currently own and share with our two toddlers.  

    So I will move and perhaps back to Kettering because I have a constitutional right to choose where I want to live!  Unfortunately you may be right Larkin – another predator or criminal could possibly target my family because they assume we have more “stuff” because we live in a suburb but again it is my constitutional right to live where I want  and crime is not the victims fault!  

    Thank you Larkin for your kind encouragement that I and my family suffer the consequences of  the economy and lagging housing market with home values “in the toilet” as you put it.  Our home may not sell but I am getting out of here before he is released.  So if I have to give my beautiful home that my husband I have worked hard for back to the bank or take a loss to keep my sanity and emotional health in check  and my family safe from this predator – I guess I’ll do that!   

    And just so you know my husband does have “the balls” to live within the city limits along with “the balls” to serve and protect a city full of haters that want to assume and pass judgment on situations they don’t truly have a full understanding of.   Blame me for our move because I just don’t have “the balls” to live 1.4 miles from the scum bag that raped me.  

    So the way I see it is this – God answered my prayers on June 10th with the Supreme Court ruling.  WOW!  Just 4 days before the 15 year “anniversary” of my assault.  Hallelujah GOD is good! 

    Goodbye  Dayton. We love our home and wish we could stay but it is time for my family and I to move on.  But sleep tight Dayton and know that you still have a dedicated, honest hard working family man protecting you to the best of his ability – even though he won’t be living  within the city limits for much longer.

    No hard feelings Larkin.  Just another side to the coin, right?

  34. David Lauri June 12, 2009 / 10:36 pm
    I continue to be surprised by people who believe in an omnipotent God getting involved in everything, including state supreme court decisions.  I suppose the God who convinced the state supreme court to strike down the residency rule is the same one who influenced the United States Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas (2003).  Everything according to His will, right?
  35. Larkin June 13, 2009 / 1:13 am
    While my sympathy is with BSH, her logic eludes me. She was brutally attacked in Kettering, but she prayed to be able to leave Dayton with all of its violent crime, so that she could return to Kettering.  All righty, then. 

  36. Jeff June 14, 2009 / 10:00 am
    BSH’s point is not lost on me.  She and everyone else should be able to live where they want and owe apologies to no one.  I work here, I have decided to stay here for now, but if my wife were attacked, I too would move to a safer city.  Make no mistake, for those that are arguing which city is more safe, crime can and does happen everywhere but it happens to occur in Dayton more.  I am on the pointy end of the stick.  I get to see the crimes in color.  I get the unbiased views from the victims and their families.  Keep in mind, not all crimes get reported, statistical reports are great but do not tell the full story nor do they provide a “relative safety” measurement.    The victims of crime that I see are acutely aware that the city of Dayton is a rough place, we can root for Dayton, we can try our best to save this city, but for now it is a dangerous place when the sun goes down.   BSH didn’t pray to leave Dayton, she simply does not want to live a mile away from her attacker, how is that hard to understand?
  37. Larkin June 14, 2009 / 1:37 pm
    Jeff, did you read the same post I did? She was attacked in Kettering, so presumably the guy can get to Kettering from wherever he was. On the other hand, she is “leaving before he is released.” Released from where? Is the prison 1.4 miles from her house?  She specifically said that God answered her prayers to be able to live where she wanted to live. If she’s on the run from her attacker, well Dayton is a big city, but if someone is after you specifically sometimes the whole country isn’t big enough. If that person’s NOT after you, then the city limits encompass an enormous area.

     I saw plenty of violent crime in a city of 6,000 people in picturesque Montana, and the brutality I saw there is enough to take your breath away. (And as a hands-on journalist, plenty of it was as first hand  for me as it was for first responders.) Sometimes I knew the victims personally, I have held their mothers in my arms while they wept. 

    When you say that Dayton is a dangerous place after dark, you are helping to create the myth. and that pitchfork has two tines: that crime takes place at night and that anyplace is safe after dark. 

    We can choose to live in fear, or not. Finally, the geography doesn’t have much to do with it. 

  38. Jeff June 14, 2009 / 11:44 pm
    Larkin I did read the same post as you, BSH clearly states that her attacker, if released will be moving in with his parents that live 1.4 miles away from BSH’s current home in Dayton.  Secondly, I will not argue that crime happens everywhere but to say that by my saying that Dayton is dangerous after dark is creating a myth, I will have to laugh.  Maybe if we stop pretending Dayton is safe then we can get to the real problem.  My statements about Dayton are not creating a myth, it is 18 years of working on the west side of Dayton.  Geography has EVERYTHING to do with it.  I could spend 18 years in centerville and maybe…maybe see four homicides, I can see four homicides on a busy weekend in Dayton.  So please, I do love this city too, but rose colored glasses helped create this city’s crisis,  only by having frank and honest discussion and decisions can we fix what is broken in this city.
  39. Larkin June 15, 2009 / 1:31 am
    Jeff, I live on the west side. Read the stats. I did, before I bought this house. Fairview, okay, sure. But not this neighborhood and I’m sick of everything on the west edge of the river getting tarred with the same brush. 

    I spent 18 years in the most beautiful little town in Montana you’d want to see . . . the tourists just love it. And the horror stories I could tell would match any you could offer. Perhaps not in volume, (its only 6000 people after all) but certainly in their level of vile inhumanity. Geography has NOTHING to do with it. 

    BSH was a victim in Kettering yet she suggests going back there. She could stay in Dayton and not be 1.4 miles from her released attacker. Her logic is fuzzy . . .  and your stubborn position is pretty strange too. Had a look at the EAST side lately? Or is the crime there not such a big deal since the perps are white?  No young women found in trash cans over here lately. No mom and pop stores knocked over, pop  murdered by a regular over here . . . 

    I’m tired of this pissing match, and disappointed that you’ve taken such a narrow point of view. I hope you move. 

  40. David Esrati June 15, 2009 / 7:27 am

    The residency rule isn’t what made Dayton unsafe, it was when we stopped investing in parks, playgrounds and schools- and started thinking about investing in corporate welfare in the name of economic development.
    Busing hurt- because people voted on the issue with their feet. The residency rule was thrown in as a stopgap to stop the hemorrhaging. Forest Ridge has a high proportion of cops living in it- and crime still occurs there- because, well, people aren’t perfect.
    Lets get back to making Dayton a place people want to live in, by choice.

  41. Jeff June 15, 2009 / 12:09 pm
    I have no narrow viewpoint, Larkin, mine is one ripe with first hand experience of what poverty and the lack of hope can do to a neighborhood.  I did not inject race into the conversation because it does not need to be.  Crime happens to and is committed by whites and blacks alike.  You decided that because I spoke of west side crime then I was referring to blacks and somehow decided that white crime was okay.  Who has fuzzy logic now?  Your concern about my moving is appreciated but trust me on this one, if you live in Fairview then really, invest in bars for your windows and adorn your children with kevlar vests, you and I both know that your neighborhood is declining faster than you can type your retort.
  42. BSH June 16, 2009 / 7:20 pm
    Thank you Jeff for your response and help in clarifying my statement.  Perhaps my emotions got in the way of clearly stating my opinion on this issue.  However I really didn’t think it was rocket science. 

    Larkin, I didn’t as you put it “pray to leave Dayton so that I could return to Kettering”.  I said God answered my prayers – period.  My family and I now have options and choices in how to best deal with this situation.

    Who knows where we’ll move maybe Kettering maybe not.  Sure I could put some more miles between us and stay in Dayton but now I don’t have to.   I just know that it feels good to finally have that option.  Why wouldn’t I want to live in Kettering?  I don’t hate that city because something bad happened to me there.  I don’t hate Dayton because the crime rate is higher.   I’m not ignorant – I know that it doesn’t matter where I go – if he wants to find me he will.  I just know that I do not want to live 1.4 miles from the monster that attacked me.

    I just think that citizens that do not agree with the ruling need to remember that everyone’s situation, familial status and need is unique.  Yes my husband agreed to live in the city when he accepted the position with DPD but lives change and now the law has too. 

    This is a great forum for opening up our minds, listening to one another’s views and working together to make Dayton a better place to live, work and play.  Because at the end of the day no matter where we live – Dayton or suburb – Dayton is the core of this region and we need to work together to improve all aspects of this DYING region!

    Thanks again Jeff.  I have a feeling you “get” it! Stay safe!

  43. Pinetree June 16, 2009 / 7:56 pm
    All of the concerns I’ve been hearing and reading from the fine citizens of Dayton since the ruling really makes me want to step it up, give it my all and do the very best job I can do for this great city of neighbors! 

    So….I’ve committed myself to writing more traffic and misdemeanor violations, citing every jaywalker, stopping every cyclist that clearly doesn’t have the required audial device & light attached to their “vehicle” and just  really beefing up my community policing efforts.  Hey it’s all for you guys – it’s the least I can do! 

    P.S. Kiss a cop today!

  44. Jeff June 16, 2009 / 8:42 pm
    haha Pinetree….thank you for keeping us safe!  BSH I do get it and I wish you only the best.  I too,  knew the residency requirement when I was hired 18 years ago.  I could say the city was different then but even now, I love my neighborhood and currently have no plans to move within the next 5 years.  With that said, I think only those that have been deprived freedom truely appreciate it when it comes.  I  didn’t want to leave Dayton so much as I wanted the choice to live where I wanted to.  No one should be told where to raise their family but some people just cannot wrap their heads around that point of view.  It is settled now, fortunately and we can all find some other hot button.  In the end I think we all realize that as Dayton goes, the entire region goes, death of the core always ripples outward.  I think however that in a few years much of Dayton will be a prime spot for new businesses.  New schools, new roads including highways and residential streets, new bridges….a new mayor and city manager….haha…..hard to say but I feel good about this city.  Yes, I can speak of it’s dangerous underbelly but it has become, my town.

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