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Police to Patrol Westside Less, Residents Not Happy

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Photo by James Herman via LAist Featured Photos on Flickr

The Westside, especially areas like Padific Palisades, is not that dangerous. Let's just call it property crime/non-violent land. The LAPD now has a plan that will move 26 officers from the West Los Angeles Division to other areas of higher crime in a reorganization of patrol areas because two new stations are opening--one in Koreatown and another in the West Valley.

It's safe to say people are not thrilled with the idea. "I'm upset about it. We are the ones who put in the most tax dollars, yet we're getting fewer patrols," said Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, who represents much of the Westside, to the LA Times. "They say they are not singling us out. But to me it is unacceptable. We pay good money for good protection. We are not happy."

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A lot of the issue comes down to geography. While big swaths of land may have fewer people than a densely packed portion of Koreatown, response times are likely to go down in those larger areas.

In Sherman Oaks, there has traditionally been two patrol areas between the 101 and Mulholland and the 405 and Coldwater Canyon. Come January, there will basically be one car with another unit dipping below the 101 for a few neighborhoods. The switch doesn't increase the population to the patrol areas, but it will effect response time.

Jack Weiss, who represents both Sherman Oaks and portions of the Westside has a different take outlook on the newly proposed patrol borders. "The best way to protect low-crime areas is put the cops on the dots in high-crime areas. That protects us all." Weiss heads up the city's Public Safety Committee and is running for City Attorney in the March election.