On April 8, Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman staged a press conference next to a jungle gym, lamenting the fact that the city was unable to protect children by posting signs banning concealed handgun license-holders. Responding to his antics, Columbus-area legislators introduced legislation to abolish Section 9 of House Bill 12.

As the story below illustrates, these officials could better spend their time worrying about criminals in parks, rather than law-abiding citizens.

August 04, 2004
Columbus Dispatch

It certainly wasn’t the best of hideouts for the suspected bank robber: a park where Whitehall police were helping to prepare for National Night Out.

"Those officers probably wouldn’t have been there on any other day," Whitehall detective Steve Brown said last night.

Click on the "Read More..." link below for more.

Mamudou Jallow was arrested after parking what police say was his getaway car in a lot inside Bishop Memorial Park near Langley Road.

Jallow, 27, of 1223 Dellwood Ave., was in the Franklin County jail last night and charged with one count of robbery.

He is accused of walking into Bank One, 4660 E. Main St., at 1:20 p.m. and handing the teller a note as he placed a fake explosive device on the counter. The note threatened to blow up the bank unless he received a specific amount of cash.

The bank parking lot, parts of Great Eastern Shopping Center and a stretch of Main Street east of Hamilton Road were closed for two hours as the Columbus police bomb squad checked the device, which turned out to be a plastic bag full of plastic bags, Brown said.

Police say Jallow got the money and ran from the bank, leaving the fake bomb on the counter. As he went behind the bank, a dye pack planted in the money exploded. Police say he then dropped the cash and drove away in a car that he later told police he had borrowed.

A description of the suspect and the car was aired over Whitehall’s police channel.

As officers searched the suburb, Sgt. Robert McKelvey and other officers involved in National Night Out were at the park, setting up for a gathering last night.

They saw Jallow in the car in the parking lot and knew they had their man when he was told to put his hands out the window.

"I knew we had the right guy because he had red dye all over his hands," McKelvey said in a news release.

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