LAPD Outlines Security Plans At Dodger Stadium

LOS ANGELES (CBS/AP) — A vicious attack on a baseball fan is focusing attention on security problems at Dodger Stadium and drawing promises from the team and the city that more police will be oh hand during games.

They are hoping to avoid a repeat of the season’s first game, when two men in Dodgers attire attacked a 42-year-old man wearing rival San Francisco Giants gear in the parking lot. A week later, he is still in critical condition. Police are still looking for the assailants, despite a $150,000 reward and sketches of the suspects.

suspect sketches1 LAPD Outlines Security Plans At Dodger Stadium

(credit: Los Angeles Police Department)

“These two individuals are not true Dodger fans. They are common criminals,” Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said at a news conference Friday, his first public comments on the beating.

KNX 1070 Newsradio Talks to Fans about New Security Measures

The attack, however, has focused attention on security problems at the ballpark, and the intense — sometimes bitter — rivalry among Dodgers and Giants fans.

More officers will be dispatched as part of increased security announced Friday. City officials and the team said the additional officers will stand guard at the next home game on April 14.

To fans concerned about their safety, McCourt said: “I hear you loudly and I hear you clearly.”

The team turned to Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck for help and hired former police Chief William Bratton and his New York security firm to plot a safe future for fans at one of the nation’s most historic ballparks.

McCourt, Beck and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa all promised changes that will ensure a safe, family-friendly, fan-friendly environment. Many of the changes will be in place before the April 14 game against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Among the changes are LAPD officers in uniform who can eject or arrest troublemakers, including season ticket holders, and enforce the ban on tailgating or drinking in the parking lots. The team will pay for the additional police, although the price hasn’t been set yet.

Eventually, there will be license plate scanners, observation towers, increased lighting and undercover operations throughout the stadium.

Team officials said they were reconsidering their plan to sell half-price alcohol at six games this season.

They also promised to look at prices and serving sizes for alcoholic beverages, as well as when to stop serving alcohol, Dodger spokesman Josh Rawitch told the Los Angeles Times.

“There will be zero tolerance for misbehavior at Dodger games,” Beck said.

Some types of trash talk also will not be tolerated.

“If people are making comments that inherently incite violence, then you’ve got to go,” he said.

That will be good news for Erick Gustafson, 43. He said some fans were out of control. At a game last summer, he and his son were waiting in line for tickets when some fans shouted insults at his 10-year-old boy because he was wearing a St. Louis Cardinals shirt.

“He was all excited, he made some money and bought his own jersey,” Gustafson said. He didn’t want the boy to face similar taunts on the way out, so “in the sixth inning, I said `let’s go.’ It was just for my son’s safety.”

Radio talk show host Tom Leykis said he stopped going to Dodger games in October 2009 after two fans recognized and taunted him for eight innings with “nonstop vulgarities,” then followed him up the stairs.

He called security and two officers arrived and talked to the men, who he called “drunken stockbrockers,” but did nothing more because they professed their innocence, Leykis told The Associated Press.

“We’ve got HDTV. I don’t need this and I stopped going,” said Leykis, who offered $50,000 to the reward fund to find the men who attacked Giants fan, Bryan Stow, last week.

Stow was bludgeoned and kicked as he left the ballpark after the Dodgers defeated the Giants. He is still in a medically induced coma at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, and his family is accepting emailed well wishes from thousands of baseball fans.

The rivalry is more than a century old, dating back to when they were both still in New York.

The Dodgers moved into Chavez Ravine on April 10, 1962, four years after both the Dodgers and Giants moved to California from New York. Today Dodger Stadium is the third oldest park in the majors.

In the win-loss column, the Dodgers and Giants are almost even. Each team has six World Series titles. Head-to-head, the Giants have won 1,172 games and the Dodgers have won 1,152.

The Dodgers haven’t won a World Series since 1988. The Giants are reigning world champs.

On Opening Day, a plane flew over the stadium, trailing a banner that said: “Dodgers still suck … from SF champs fans.”

While losing stings, the public feud between McCourt and his wife, Jamie, over ownership of the team hasn’t helped the Dodgers or their fans’ image of the team.

“The minute you start hearing news about your favorite team beyond the sports pages, you have a problem,” said David Carter, executive director of the University of Southern California Sports Business Institute.

Not everyone is afraid. Sergio Courtney, 38, of Los Angeles, said he’s been going to Dodger games since he was 5. He never felt unsafe and he doesn’t now, he said.

Plans for massive police presence are overkill, he said, recommending observation towers.

“They don’t need a whole police force, just a couple eyes in the sky,” he said.

The next game between the teams will be Monday night, when the Dodgers visit AT&T Park in San Francisco for a three-game series. The Giants said they always have increased security for the Dodgers series.

On Friday, Stow’s picture with his two kids was shown on the main centerfield scoreboard at the Giants-Cardinals afternoon game. The crowd began cheering: “Beat L.A.!”

The Dodgers are asking fans to help with expenses for Bryan Stow. Cash and checks will be accepted at a fundraiser for Stow on Monday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Dodger Stadium in Parking Lot 1.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • LOU

    CCW’S shoulod be granted to all LA.citizens who qualify, thats where the emphasis should be, Gun owners need a mass march on Washington and sacramento demanding CCW:S, why does Mike Antonovich receive a ccw and no one else can ?

    • dfrhrwe

      My boyfriend thinks the same with me. He is eight years older than me, lol. We met online at AgeM’ingle. C’○’M’ a nice and free place for younger women and older men, or older women and younger men, to interact with each other. Maybe you wanna check out or tell your friends.

      • royrogers

        dfrhrwe you are an just anothoer whole blond, get a grip of where you are at.

  • Everyday Guy

    Yes, it’s time to profile and stereotype. Gangsters have a uniform; if they wear it, they are escorted off the premises. Their pink lipstick and pink high heels also give them away.

    • Saber 1

      Dress code for everyone. No over sized shirts, stop the hip hop/rap music and get back to the organ player. Raise the ticket prices where the low life bottom feeders can’t afford. Hat bills facing forward and no flashing gang signs.

  • Kau Phaart

    And some folks want MORE sports venues here in LA – remember what “Fan” means = FANATIC. Yea clamping down on the fans who aren’t rabid and charging them more will work, NOT. More Doyers Gang Wear for the vatos is just what we need to continue with the continuing downslide of los angeles!

  • drozone69

    racially motivated attack,plain and simple.Jaun and maria’s unskilled labor can only go on for so long until they look around and realize whitey is outnumbered and they are tired of cooking and cleaning.Americas pastime got a homerun on reality.

    • John Q.

      tired of cooking and cleaning…not gonna happen when a large percentage are still dropping out of school before the 10th grade.

  • royrogers

    If I said once I said it a hundred times. It is a waste of taxpayers money to be have LAPD being used as security guards at the stadiud. This is McCourt’s issue, not LAPD. We the people will be paying for the overtime, while the LAPD, security guard unit is watching the game, talking on cell phones, talking to each other about the money they are making and most of all checking out the women, for the horn dogs they are.
    We the people need to petition that Frank McCourt hire a secerity company to do the work so they can be more profession and stimulate the economy,do the job right, and not cost us the people in more tax dollars because Frank can not do his job! It is time for the people to boycott the games and not pay for the LAPD OVERTIME WASTE, that Frank McCourt can pay for out of his divorce settlement.

  • claudius

    I will not be attending a Dodger’s game at any time in the future. Why would I want to subject myself to attending a game surrounded by LA thugs . The aggressive nature of Angelenos is bad enough and I can’t way to get out of this cesspool of a city and move somewhere where people respect other human beings and aren’t so uptight because of the time they spend sitting in traffic.

  • arnold

    this city is not safe with allt spades running around

  • Badbruno

    So long as every sports team continues to support criminal street gangs by changing the color’s of their logos and not demanding rap stars etc to either cover or demand royalties for the use of their logo’s in videos, not al lot will change.

    Oh, and where Dodger Stadium is located and selling tickets for 6 bucks is not a good idea.

  • Jeb_BMWLover

    More hardworking “migrants” acting up?

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