A Los Angeles Police Department detective is advising visitors not to come to his city because he can’t guarantee that he and his law enforcement colleagues can keep them safe.
Jamie McBride pointed to the policies of Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom and progressive district attorneys who are “advocating for the criminals.”
“We’re telling people don’t visit because we don’t think we can keep you safe right now,” he said Monday in an interview with Fox News.
Crime, including “smash-and-grab” robberies, he said, has increased in the wake of a “zero bail” policy and the state’s Proposition 47, which reduced shoplifting theft of $950 or less from a felony to a misdemeanor.
The Los Angeles Times reported violent crime rates have been rising in the city for two years while property crimes have changed modestly. Car thefts are up nearly 53% and homicides are up 46.7% from 2019.
And, the paper reported, the crime wave has affected “the safest, wealthiest neighborhoods” in the L.A. area, with violent crime in Beverly Hills rising 23% in the last two years.
Last Wednesday, philanthropist Jacqueline Avant was killed in her Beverly Hills home.
Oprah Winfrey mourned her death on Twitter.
“The fact that this has happened, her being shot and killed in her own home … has shaken the laws of the Universe,” Winfrey wrote.
Dominick DeLuca, owner of a local skateboard shop, told the Times he has “never seen anything like it,” saying his shop has been broken into three times in the past two years.
On Monday, the head of the union that represents nearly 1,000 prosecutors in Los Angeles County accused District Attorney George Gascon of remaining silent during the surge in burglaries and robberies, which have become increasingly violent, Fox News reported.
Eric Siddall, vice president of the Association of Los Angeles Deputy District Attorneys, said Gascón cares more about the rights of criminal suspects than crime victims.
Gascón, in his inaugural speech in December 2020, vowed to reverse crime policies he regarded as too harsh. Among his controversial moves was his announcement last month that he would release a convicted murderer who had served only six years of his 50-year sentence. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has charged that some of Gascón’s policies have emboldened criminals.
Last Thursday, L.A. Police Department Chief Michel Moore and Mayor Eric Garcetti criticized policies allowing nonviolent arrestees to be released without bail.
Gov. Newsom is blaming his state’s big cities for the crime wave, charging they are not enforcing the law against thieves.
“Police need to arrest them. Prosecutors need to prosecute them. Judges need to hold people accountable for breaking the law,” Newsom said. “These are not victimless crimes, and I have no empathy for these criminal elements.”
Meanwhile, Democratic political leaders in California have remained silent on Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s denial of the existence of the “smash-and-grab” crime surge, in an interview with the Washington Times.
“We have to talk about specifics because, for example, we’re actually seeing a lot of these allegations of organized retail theft are not actually panning out,” the congresswoman said. “I believe it’s a Walgreens in California cited it, but the data didn’t back it up.”
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