Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Report out from Area Commander Meeting: October 13, 2009

Here are the minutes from this evening’s community meeting with the Northeast Pomona Area Commander:

A. Cpl. Haggerty introduced our newly appointed chief of police, Chief Keetle, and other
members of the command staff.

B. Northeast Area Commander Alex Rilloraza defined the borders of the Northeast quadrant (East of Garey, North of Holt) and described the many ways to reach him (the online reporting system, phone messages, e-mail). He also introduced his partner in crime prevention, Carlos Hernandez from the Crime Prevention Unit.

C. Cpl. Haggerty announced that Pomona received a federal grant from the Department of Justice for a Weed & Seed North Program. This five-year program seeks to “weed” communities of criminal elements, then “seed” these same communities with programs and resources to improve the lives of residents. Weed & Seed North will include the area south of the 10, north of the railroad tracks, east of Mills, and west of San Antonio. Reports from individuals who participated in the Weed & Seed South program, now in its 4th year, suggest this program has a history of success in Pomona.

The Weed & Seed North program is looking for residents who are interested in helping develop the program. Call Cpl. Haggerty to express interest (909) 620-2318.

D. Senior Dispatcher Cindy Sawyer described the system the PD uses to prioritize calls to the emergency and non-emergency numbers. Briefly, the priority codes are:

- Priority 0 – Immediate response needed, imminent death is likely.
- Priority 1 – Critical calls for service needing an immediate response.
- Priority 2 – Do not require an immediate response, but need to be handled as soon as possible.
- Priority 3 – Generally not critical in nature and may be reports of crimes or incidents that occurred some time ago.
- Priority 4 – Grey area. Priority 5 and 6 calls can be bumped to Priority 4.
- Priority 5 – Party calls.
- Priority 6 – Call types for city call out crews, parking and code enforcement-related calls.

Sawyer also shared some tips for those of us who call dispatch:
- Use 911 for real emergencies. Use (909) 622-1241 for non-emergencies.
- Describe what has happened and where.
- Answer all questions as best you can.
- The dispatcher will ask you for your name and number. They do this so they can call you back if more information is needed and/or to give you status updates. It is OK to decline to provide this information.

E. Area Commander Alex Rilloraza then responded to questions and concerns brought to his attention since the last meeting. In particular:
- Montvue Signs – I’m not sure what this concern was (I wasn’t at the last meeting about this quadrant); Rilloraza assured us signs are present, saying we can “put this one to rest.”
- Prostitution on Holt – ongoing efforts include prostitution stings, extra patrol by beat officers and motor officers.
- Traffic enforcement at Palomares & McKinley – Over 20 stop sign violations were observed and sited.
- Narcotics sales locations under investigation
- Lots of gang bookings – they showed a cool hot spots map; I’ll try to get a copy to post.

F. Terri Baker provided an update on the Crime Free Multi-Housing Program. This is a crime prevention program targeting apartment complexes; the program is designed to reduce calls for service and to retain good tenants. This month the program really kicks into high gear with an 8-hour training for property owners and managers.

G. Community Service Officer Carlos Hernandez provided a short lecture on the prevention of fraud and identity theft.

H. Sgt. Marcus Perez from the Gang Unit described the scope of the unit’s activities (vice, narcotics, gangs, prostitutions, details at the liquor stores and bars). The unit includes four officers, two detectives, and two analysts. He shared some impressive success stories of the unit’s collaborations with property owners to boot tenants involved in criminal activity. Call them with questions or concerns: 909-802-7474.

I. Announcements:
- Red Ribbon Week. Join the kick-off festivities on Thursday, October 22nd. 9AM – 11 PM at the Pomona Civic Center.
- The Santa Cop program is gearing up for toy distribution, slated for December 15th and 16th. Keep an eye out for boxes around town where you can drop off new unwrapped toys. The Crime Prevention Unit welcomes volunteers to help wrap the gifts, too. Contact Carlos Hernandez to volunteer (909) 620-2318.
- The next Area Commander meeting is slated for Tuesday, November 10 (I’m not sure which quadrant will serve as the focus). The next meeting to discuss the northeast quadrant is tentatively slated for February 9.

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