Friday night Montford stabbing reported

Kenan Hopkins reported on Facebook a stabbing Friday night:

Hey all – I’m the Founder/President of Valet Gourmet and it was one of our drivers that got stabbed on Elizabeth St last night. He is doing very well, and while the ambulance took him to the hospital, he was released shortly after.

He was stabbed in the back while leaving work and the person did not take any of his money or personal belongings. The APD says that they have a “person of interest” in custody. This is the first time in 11 years of being open we’ve had to deal with a violent crime situation.

I will gladly put Valet Gourmet’s resources behind this group if we have a way to band together and prevent this from happening again. We have over 60 people working with Valet Gourmet and I do not want to let a random incident like this ruin a great community and the organization that we’ve built.

Thanks for adding me to the group – I’m happy to have found it, even if it’s the result of an unfortunate incident.

Posts on Reddit by JunesongProvision indicate that the incident is being handled by Asheville Police Department, that it was not the result of a personal dispute and that the police may now have a suspect in custody.


Thanks to @RavenRavinoff on Twitter for noting the incident.

About Jeff Fobes
As a long-time proponent of media for social change, my early activities included coordinating the creation of a small community FM radio station to serve a poor section of St. Louis, Mo. In the 1980s I served as the editor of the "futurist" newsletter of the U.S. Association for the Club of Rome, a professional/academic group with a global focus and a mandate to act locally. During that time, I was impressed by a journalism experiment in Mississippi, in which a newspaper reporter spent a year in a small town covering how global activities impacted local events (e.g., literacy programs in Asia drove up the price of pulpwood; soybean demand in China impacted local soybean prices). Taking a cue from the Mississippi journalism experiment, I offered to help the local Green Party in western North Carolina start its own newspaper, which published under the name Green Line. Eventually the local party turned Green Line over to me, giving Asheville-area readers an independent, locally focused news source that was driven by global concerns. Over the years the monthly grew, until it morphed into the weekly Mountain Xpress in 1994. I've been its publisher since the beginning. Mountain Xpress' mission is to promote grassroots democracy (of any political persuasion) by serving the area's most active, thoughtful readers. Consider Xpress as an experiment to see if such a media operation can promote a healthy, democratic and wise community. In addition to print, today's rapidly evolving Web technosphere offers a grand opportunity to see how an interactive global information network impacts a local community when the network includes a locally focused media outlet whose aim is promote thoughtful citizen activism. Follow me @fobes

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10 thoughts on “Friday night Montford stabbing reported

  1. “Thanks to @RavenRavinoff on Twitter for noting the incident.”

    Is Jeff Fobes the only one who doesn’t know his name?

    • Jeff Fobes

      My thanks was meant as a hat tip to the person who brought the story to my attention — and it made sense to reference the twitter handle because the information came in via Twitter. By providing the Twitter handle I was providing readers the tool trace the origin of the story from my perspective.

      • Understood. However, with respect, referring to the the person’s real name, which is well known, in addition to his or her Twitter handle does not undermine the goal providing readers with a “tool to trace the origin.”

  2. This was meant to be a personal statement to my friends and neighbors in the Montford community, in the wake of a tragic event that happened outside of their front doors. I do not appreciate you lifting it from a random Facebook group and publishing it to the web without even contacting me. This is not an official statement from Valet Gourmet, only from me personally. I hope/wish that you guys will try a little harder in the future.

    And sourcing Reddit?!? C’mon.

    • C Warren

      I agree with the statement above. In fact the main reason there was a series of posts on Reddit to begin with was because of the lack of ANY information from local news sources. It began as the posting of questions and requests for information about the incident on the local Reddit board. Those questions were then followed by the posting of second hand information from community bulletin boards, and unverified accounts from a couple individuals, and then posts by individuals seeking out answers for themselves and sharing what info they obtained. None of this was the kind of confirmed information journalistic sources are expected to provide. It would be one thing to take “the lead” from such posts, and then separately investigate and report the results, but it is quite another to just repeat posts from social media as fact.

    • Jeff Fobes

      Kenan: I apologize for my misunderstanding of the intent of your statement. Because it was posted on the Montford Crimewatch Facebook page, I did not take it as a personal statement. The comment thread on Reddit was substantial enough that I believed there was a likelihood that an incident had indeed taken place. I posted the information on our “Blogwire” feed as a report from citizens, not as a report substantiated by Xpress or another media outlet. Was it responsible to let the public know late Saturday night that several people believed there to have been a stabbing in Montford and once the reports had been posted publicly on the Internet — without confirming it? We are in a chaotic transition period for news-gathering. And the boundaries between backstage and frontstage have blurred tremendously. Not easy times for any of us.

      • Jeff – thank you for the explanation. For what it’s worth, I keep official Valet Gourmet statements to our own social media pages. If I post something on my personal account, it’s always my opinion or a viewpoint (such as what happened with the stabbing). No harm done, just something you may wish to watch in the future. And the Montford Crime Watch group has officially changed their policy so that hopefully there is no grey area in the future.

      • A. Griffin

        I have to add that I think taking comments from what is supposed to be a community forum and posting them in a “news” format isn’t at all reporting and it doesn’t benefit the purpose of the group which is to have a closed neighborhood discussion in the hopes of preventing crime or making neighbors more watchful when there is criminal activity. As a Montford resident who uses this forum, I would be less willing to post my name and details of criminal activity if I was worried about retaliation from the criminals themselves. It is completely reasonable that people posting in a neighborhood forum to expect that their names and comments will be used only in the forum and not published for the city at large. As a reporter, I would expect you are able to find other ways to gather details on crime than using our group page to skip over the process of validating details through credible sources who know their speaking “on the record” and would have at the very least asked for permission to use their words and name in something published as news. It’s a breach of trust to both your readers and the people who use that forum to connect with their neighbors. Sure ethical news reporting takes a little extra time and work, but it’s worth it in the long run to preserve reputations and keep community minded groups functioning for their intended purposes.

        • Jeff Fobes

          The Montford Crime Group is open to nonmembers and is a virtually public discussion. More than that, it is a great example of how citizens have become publishers, bypassing traditional media, and in effect doing their own reporting. I agree that private conversations need to be honored. But I don’t see an open Facebook discussion group as private. Xpress’ blogwire post aggregated in a timely way what seemed to be a responsible and credible discussion about public safety and gave it a further reach.

  3. Lynne Harty

    The thing no one is talking about is why this event wasn’t reported by the news media. Does the APD keep violent crimes quiet to hide them from the tourists vs. warning the citizens? Also, did they catch the person who committed the crime?

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