Did you know that there are SEVEN different Neighborhood Associations in the Rockridge area of Oakland? And we’re talking security-focused groups that hire patrols, offer security advice, etc., just as URNA does. What does this mean? Well, you probably know already – that our area could use more of a police presence to aid in crime prevention, but that is not the reality now, so we’ve all started efforts to make up the difference. There are a few good signs, and on April 29, URNA and six other Oakland neighborhood patrol groups met this with OPD Deputy Chief Darren Allison, Captain Randy Wingate, Our CRO (Community Resource Officer) Kristine Jurgens, City Council-members Annie Campbell Washington and Abel Guillen, a representative from Dan Kalb’s office (he was traveling), along with Patricia Rose – our NSC (Neighborhood Services Coordinator), to discuss crime trends and ways to improve coordination with OPD.
Some Oakland stats first – Good news/bad news:
The good news is that OPD is budgeted for 797 officers and staffing is currently up to 753 officers. Since Mayor Schaff took office the staffing increased from 600 – 753 officers! Good progress, although some analysis recommends 1200 officers for a city of our size.
The bad news is that Oakland faces significant challenges in its 2017-2019 budget, which projects a $32 million deficit. The budget does include a third police academy to bring staffing up to the authorized number. Other items:
OPD had monthly meetings with security companies in past and we’re looking into re-starting those, likely with a quarterly meeting frequency.
AREA CRIME Stats are available anytime on City web site. Here is the link for AREA 2 stats. (URNA: We are in Area 2 and Police Beat 13X – FYI)
Deputy Chief Allison and Captain Wingate also spoke about:
Citizen home camera video can be very helpful for identifying suspects in crimes! Urged all to use the Oakland CAMERA REGISTRY (click to see info below)
“Ceasefire” efforts focusing on the highest-risk individuals have helped drive down crime in Rockridge and the Oakland hills.
CHANCES OF ANOTHER OFFICER ON BEAT 13: New OPD Chief Kirkpatrick open to looking at the deployment model – in place since 1970s. So, it is possible, but hard to judge…
OPD Priorities: Obvious that they prioritize physical harm or the risk of it in responding to calls. If you call in a crime, make that your priority too. (Example: A robbery will have slower response than a robbery with possible robber on premises, etc.)