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D.C. Delegate: National Mall dangerously dark

Tuesday - 11/6/2012, 3:27am  ET

daylight
This entire lamp portion of this streetlight, near one of the entrances to the Sculpture Garden, is missing. (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
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Michelle Basch, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - Because Daylight Saving Time is over and it's getting dark sooner, a local leader took time Monday night to inspect the streetlights that help deter crime on the National Mall.

"The mall is pretty dark, and we will not forget that there were about half a dozen muggings one after the other out here about seven or eight years ago. We've been inspecting the Mall seasonally ever since," says D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton.

She says the District has a responsibility to its residents and residents of other parts of the region as well as tourists who frequent the Mall.

Speaking near the intersection of Madison Drive and 7th Street in Northwest Monday night, Norton said her latest check of the streetlights left her concerned.

"People use this Mall, this beautiful Mall, when night falls early. And we found three lights out, two on this side before the American History and the Natural History museums, and another in front of the (Smithsonian) castle."

Norton is sending a letter to the National Park Service asking them to repair the lights that are out, and to fully inspect the rest of the lights on the Mall.

"We think that the Mall is actually too dark altogether, so you can't afford to have lights out. And there are parts of the Mall near the corners where there are no lights at all, where lights need to be installed."

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)