Arlington neighborhood hit by violence again

Bert Road becoming just as familiar as Moncrief in Jacksonville crime news

By Ashley Spicer - Reporter, anchor

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A man shot Saturday afternoon on Bert Road is the latest in a series of violent crimes afflicting this neighborhood near the intersection of Arlington Road and the Arlington Expressway.

The man, who Jacksonville police have not identified, was hospitalized with life-threatening injures. Jacksonville police investigating had no suspect information on Saturday.

Neighbors like Makayla Bird don't even bat an eye when there's a shooting nearby.

"There's always something going on over here. Moreso negative than positive," Bird said. "There's even the church that has stopped doing their outreach because it's hard. It's bad."

Jacksonville police have a place for officers to park 24 hours a day to write up reports, but residents say they don't see it making a difference.

"Even when they patrol the area, there is still a lot going on. I witnessed a police chase the other day and I was like, 'I'm going inside now,'" Bird said.

A woman who lives nearby and drives through Bert Road regularly said violence has been an issue for all 17 years she's lived in Arlington.

"There are shootings here every day. Every day," Joanne Hemaid said. "I'm afraid to drive through here. I'm scared. I think I'm going to get shot one of these days if I don't watch it."

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office's crime map tool shows there have been 14 battery calls within a one-mile radius of Bert Road in the last two months. Some of those calls involved guns or another deadly weapon.

Last October a man who police said was shot on Bert Road died in a car trying to get across the Matthews Bridge. In December 2016, a man shot at the gas station at the corner of Arlington Road and the Arlington Expressway in died on Bert Road.

Hemaid said the Cascade Apartments on Bert Road have violence problems for years. 

"I'm seeing an ambulance here pulling people out, yellow tape. I feel sorry for the ones that have to live here. I really do. They have to hide in their homes with their kids," Hemaid said. "They need to put some protection here. This is the worst area in Arlington, in my mind."

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