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Wed, Jun

Los Angeles Crime Wave: Safety Concerns Rise as Officer Numbers Decline and Violence Escalates

LOS ANGELES

RANTZ & RAVEZ - Here We Go Again…Another series of Crimes and Violence in the City of the Angels, and fewer officers available to handle the calls for service.  How safe are you in Los Angeles? 

Violent and other serious crimes have become a major concern in and around many Los Angeles neighborhoods and beyond.  The 88 cities that comprise Los Angeles County is where we regularly read articles of criminals committing a variety of crimes ranging from Murder and Rape to GTA and Smash and Grabs at retail stores; including the small Mom and Pop stores that put increased pressure on Law Enforcement agencies to address the rising crime trends and put an end to them.  This is a very difficult task for law enforcement agencies with the continuing shrinking number of law enforcement personnel sworn to Protect and Serve the people of their respective jurisdictions.  From the uniform officers in marked patrol cars to the detectives and other members of the law enforcement agencies the ranks continue to fall month after month.  Couple this troubling situation with George Gascon´ who is the most NEGLIGENT and INEFFECTIVE District Attorney in Los Angeles County history, it is no secret why the situation is only getting worse as the weeks and months pass in the sprawling City of Los Angeles and other communities within the larger region of Los Angeles County. 

Mayor Karen Bass’ official city residence was recently the most publicized residential Burglary crime scene in Los Angeles when a suspect broke a window and entered the residence while the mayor and family members were inside the home.  Yes, the Mayor of Los Angeles was victimized by a residential burglar in an early Sunday morning while she was at her official Mayor’s residence with family members including a child.  The alarm at the residence was activated and multiple units were dispatched Code 3 to the residence.  The investigation quickly resulted with the arrest of a suspect who has a violent criminal arrest history.  The suspect could have caused major injuries to the mayor and members of her family including a young child if the alarm was not activated and units were ready and available to respond to the location.  The availability of patrol units to respond to calls for service is often impacted by the lack of units that are available and clear to respond.  This situation only gets worse with the current and continuing lack of patrol officers and fewer personnel entering the police academy.  Reality has finally set in for the mayor who has reduced the target number of officers she is recruiting to the Department in the next fiscal year.  Now that the Mayor has been the victim of a home burglary for the second time, she is well aware of what hazards exist living in the City of Los Angeles. 

What is the Cost of Living in the City of Los Angeles vs other cities in the USA.  Where can you afford to live? 

A recent report listed the cost of living in various cities across America.  New York is the number one most expensive city.  You would have to earn near $67.00 an hour to live comfortably.  Your annual salary would be just shy of $140,000 a year.

The Second city is San Jose, California.  You would have to make nearly $66.00 an hour to live comfortably. 

The Third city is Irvine, California.  You would have to make near $61.00 an hour to live comfortably.

The Fourth city is Santa Ana, California.  You would have to make near $61.00 an hour to live comfortably.

The Fifth city is Boston, Massachusetts.  You would have to make near $61.00 an hour to live comfortably.

Los Angeles, California comes in at #17.  You would have to make near $54.00 an hour to live comfortably.  Additionally, a family of two working adults with two children would need a salary of $276,557 to live comfortably. 

With all the crime and violence in Los Angeles, why would anyone choose to live here?  The weather is good for the most part.  Other than that, we encounter Terrible and congested local Roads and Freeways, Homeless Camps scattered throughout the city, High Taxes, Expensive Apartment Rents, Gasoline prices approaching $6.00 a gallon and a host of other expenses that cause many people to move to less expensive places to live in America.     

The never-ending concern for passenger Safety on the Metro Bus and Rail Transit Lines. 

Another murder on the Metro Train at the Universal City Station has hit the headline news.  A lady was brutally murdered to death while riding the Metro Train home from work.  This tragic death has once again brought attention to security and safety while using public transportation in Los Angeles.  

While Metro attempts to promote passenger safety on Metro property, bus and rail lines, the crime stats tell another story.  According to a published report Crimes reported on MTA properties increased 65% since 2020 and, between March 2023 and February 2024, average monthly violent crimes on MTA properties rose more that 15%.  The statistics only reveal the incidents that are reported.  You can assume that many crimes are not reported for a variety of reasons.  So, if you think you are safe on the MTA public transportation network think again.  My suggestion is to keep our eyes open and watch for situations that may result in violence. 

It is interesting to note that Metro is working on providing additional protection for the operators of the transit lines.  Metro might consider providing additional security for the passengers who use the Metro bus and train system.  Something like letting the Law Enforcement Officers do their job of enforcing the law rather than smiling and NOT ENFORCING  the “Code of Conduct” rules on the transit lines. 

It is noted and not well publicized that Gina Osborn, the MTA’s chief security officer, was recently FIRED after she reported “Safety Issues.” 

(Dennis P.  Zine is the author of RantZ and RaveZ for CityWatchLA.com.  Dennis is retired from Law Enforcement and remains a Reserve Officer.  Dennis served on the L.A. City Council for 12 years.)    

 

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