Hill Talk: Eastern Market Works Overtime

Posted January 30, 2009 at 4:18pm

The D.C. Office of Property Management announced last week that construction hours at Eastern Market would be extended starting Jan. 28 in an effort to hit the June deadline for reopening.

“The project has been slowed due to a couple of unforeseen obstacles including the badly deteriorated flooring of the south hall,” spokesman Bill Rice wrote in a press release. Construction will now be from 7 a.m. to midnight Monday through Friday and 6 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturdays.

“The first three weeks will be the most intensive,” Rice continued. “Neighbors may hear the sound of small bobcat tractors backing up outside the building and dumping concrete from the inside of the building. The extended schedule will continue until about May.”

An early morning electrical fire ravaged Eastern Market on April 30, 2007. Indoor merchants have been selling their wares from the temporary East Hall.

Police Shoot Man Accused of Assault

A police officer shot and killed a man accused of assault at a group home on Seventh Street Northeast on the morning of Jan. 26.

Two officers responded to a call reporting a stabbing at 10:40 a.m. They arrived to find a man with a stab wound in his neck. A second man, Osman Abdullahi, 36, allegedly wielded a metal pole and a large kitchen knife, and began to hit one of the officers with the pole.

That officer fired at Abdullahi one time, and he was later pronounced dead on the scene. The stabbing victim was admitted to a hospital with non-life-threatening wounds. Both the victim and the officer’s names are being withheld while the incident is investigated. The officer, a seven-year veteran of the Metropolitan Police Department, has been placed on administrative leave with pay.

Questions remain about the nature of the group home. Some of the residents were mentally ill, and it’s unclear what mental health problems Abdullahi may have had.

Former Senate Staffer Remembered Today

The funeral Mass for Thomas Dawson, co-founder of the government relations firm Smith Dawson & Andrews, will be held at noon today at St. Peter’s Catholic Church at 313 Second Street SE. Dawson died of cancer on Jan. 16.

Dawson was born Sept. 9, 1952, in St. Paul, Minn., and moved to Washington, D.C., in 1970 to study economics at Georgetown University. After graduating in 1974, he began a long career in politics and public policy at the Senate Intelligence Committee. In the years to come, he worked on Jimmy Carter’s 1976 and 1980 presidential campaigns and in the Treasury and Transportation departments.

In 1981 he co-founded Smith Dawson & Andrews. Many of the firm’s specialties still align with his own areas of expertise.

Dawson’s former wife Elizabeth, his daughter Margaret, three brothers and two sisters survive him. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in honor of his daughter to the Edmund Burke School at 4101 Connecticut Ave. NW.