LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The chief of police joined the mayor and other top city officials Monday in protest over the planned release of state prisoners to local facilities and warned of threats to public safety if the state failed to provide adequate funding.
KNX 1070’s Pete Demetriou reports the “Public Safety Realignment Act” could have a big impact on the effectiveness of both the LAPD and City Hall.
The release and transfer of over 4,200 low-level offenders to Los Angeles County jails without additional funding from the state is “a recipe for making the problem much worse,” said Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said aid that under the plan, he will have to divert 150 officers from patrol duties to deal with probation supervision and compliance of released prisoners — a move that could mean an increase in response time and a overall decrease in public safety.
“That’s the equivalent of half of one of our patrol divisions,” said Beck. “So 911 calls will take longer to answer, reports will take longer to write, and our system will suffer because of an unfunded mandate placed on us by the state.”
Pressure is mounting for officials to Sacramento to find the money in the state’s dwindling coffers to help the cities meet the public safety demands through the final release dates in 2012.