But what about public safety?

While it was reassuring to see police agencies come together to take swift action, and it was reassuring to see a judge deny bail for an alleged shooter and set high bail amounts for others who allegedly armed themselves with illegal guns for protection, another part of what went down Monday afternoon was quite unsettling.

While police staked out a Hepburn Street apartment until a search warrant was issued, gawkers — both pedestrian and in motor vehicles — saw fit to hang out and watch in close proximity as a small army of officers with guns in their hands awaited a search warrant.

Traffic slowed to a crawl past the scene.

People sat on a curb watching.

Others pulled cars into areas marked “no parking.”

And nobody except the police agencies involved knew what was going on.

To that, we have questions.

Why wasn’t traffic redirected at the intersections known locally as Confusion Corner and at Hepburn and Seventh streets?

Why weren’t pedestrians moved away from a potential line of fire?

Line of fire? What else would you call it when you see officers positioned on the street with guns drawn for a prolonged period? What else would you call it when the Special Response Team marches up to the targeted apartment, leading the way with a heavy-power gun drawn, somewhat protected behind a police shield?

What would you call it if, heaven forbid, shots were fired from within that apartment and an innocent person — perhaps a motorist stuck in the snail’s-pace traffic that was allowed to crawl by — was taken down?

Another senseless tragedy? Or the result of a lack of common sense on the part of many parties?


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