Los Angeles: Police who patrol the downtown area of Los Angeles announced stepped-up enforcement for the coming holiday shopping season, which includes more conspicuous footbeats to deter criminal activity and enhance community safety.
“One-quarter of our major crimes which occur in the downtown area, are thefts, committed by shoplifters and persons taking other’s property when the owner is not paying attention,” said Captain Todd Chamberlain, Commanding Officer, Central Community Police Station. “We want shoppers to be aware of their surroundings and have an enjoyable shopping experience downtown.”
To combat the thefts, footbeat officers will be walking in the Historic Core, Fashion District, and the Jewelry District. Police expect the conspicuous patrols will have an effect on shoplifting, purse snatches, and pickpockets. “We also want to remind drivers to lock it, hide it keep it, which is the Department’s campaign to remind people to lock their cars and remove all items from the passenger compartment, especially electronic items and gifts,” Captain Chamberlain explained.
The Central Community Police Station has a large dedicated reserve corps. “We’re going to use every one of those officers, in conjunction with Central Area’s patrol force, during the holiday season to make police presence as conspicuous as possible.”
To increase traffic safety, officers will enforce street crossing laws such as jaywalking and crossing against the DON’T WALK signs. “Drivers and walkers who don’t follow the laws add to people’s frustration and compromise safety downtown when it gets crowded,” Captain Chamberlain said.
During the holiday season last year, police investigated one fatal and two serious traffic collisions involving pedestrians. In two of the cases, the pedestrian was crossing against the red DON’T WALK sign. “This message is about education. We want to ensure everyone’s safety while visiting downtown,” Captain Chamberlain added. “We want to avert tragedies and enhance the shopping experience this season.”
Anonymous tips can be called into Crimestoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477). Tipsters may also contact Crimestoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on “webtips” and follow the prompts.