Blogging Bayport Alameda

August 15, 2013

Police Chief Paul Rolleri: Traffic Safety Dance

Filed under: Alameda, Guest blogging — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am

When Lauren asked me if I was interested in a guest blog, my initial reaction was to say thanks, but no thanks. Then I thought about it for a few minutes and changed my mind. After all, APD has come a long way in my 21+ years here. There was a time when communication with the media was discouraged, if not completely restricted except for a few high level commanders.

When Burny Matthews became Chief in 1994, things started to evolve. I didn’t think of it in those terms at the time, but looking back, it was the first step in opening up the lines of communication between APD and the rest of the community. By the time Mike Noonan became chief, we jumped into the social media world. Overall, I think it’s a very good thing. Still, speaking on behalf of a public entity can be tricky. There’s a delicate balance between saying too much and not enough. Being honest and open without jeopardizing an investigation. Reassuring people that Alameda is a relatively safe place to live without encouraging complacency, and inspiring people to be vigilant without being paranoid. In the anonymous world of the internet, and blogging in particular, it’s easy to say anything without repercussions. In the public sector, it’s different.

So, with that in mind, I’ll talk about traffic safety. I grew up in Alameda, went to school here, and spent the first 34 years of my life here. Traffic has always been an issue, and I can honestly say I’ve seen it from both sides. When I was in high school, my mom would drive me to AHS down Otis Drive. Every day, and I mean EVERY day, there was an APD officer parked on or around the 2600 block of Otis Drive. I didn’t know anyone at APD, but my mom and nearly everyone else knew him by name. If you were running late, or just not paying attention, you had this officers autograph on the bottom of a citation. He was universally despised by everyone I knew who drove a car, and we all thought he must have something better to do. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t, but he was doing his job. In the 1970’s and 80’s I didn’t get it, but in 1992 I started to get it. Now I preach it. It’s unreal how things change!

Traffic safety, especially on the Island, has always been the subject of debate. For decades, APD had the reputation of being the enemy of the motoring public. People complained about getting too many tickets, or that the entire city was a 25 mph zone (with only a couple of exceptions). Some said we wrote too many tickets, others thought we weren’t doing enough. I think the debate exists today, and probably will continue.

I will not bore anyone here with traffic stats and data. That information is easily accessible on the city website in the APD annual workload summary. However, I will say this; our property damage only collisions were down slightly in 2012, but injury collisions went up slightly. Pedestrian collisions dropped very slightly, and bicycle collisions dropped significantly. All of this occurred during a time when our traffic enforcement dropped. A large reason for this was an unforseen reduction in out traffic unit. As recently as five years ago, we has six motorcycle officers. In 2010, that number had dropped to one. This was due to a combination of injuries, retirements, and budget reductions. By the end of this September, we will be back up to four motorcycle officers. In combination with the efforts of our patrol officers, I anticipate our enforcement will increase dramatically over the next couple of years. Bad news for some, and great news for others. It’s all about perspective.

Whatever you think about APD or traffic enforcement, please believe me when I say that we want the community to be safe as much as anyone. We do not have quotas, and no one gets a bonus for writing tickets. It’s part of our job, and I expect our officers to be proactive in this arena. Traffic safety is a shared responsibility, and that means it’s yours as well. If you are honest, you know that you could drive a little slower, slow down at a yellow light, and yield for that pedestrian who just stepped off the curb. There are kids on bikes, joggers by the beach, and shoppers in the business districts. They are your friends, family, and neighbors. We will do our part. What about you?

Police Chief Paul Rolleri was appointed as Interim Chief to the Alameda Police Department, has serious Alameda cred, and needs suggestions for books to read for the next Story time with the Chief. Might I suggest “David Gets in Trouble” by David Shannon a cautionary tale best read by an authority figure in an uniform.



  1. The lack of enforcement is very evident (see stats from 2 years ago)

    The 25mph limit is being observed more in the breach on several roads in the city. Lincoln (from Park to Webster), Stargell, Broadway are just a few examples.

    Lots of cars jump the light at Webster/Stargell as they exit the tube at freeway speeds.

    Hope these can be addressed.

    Comment by alameda — August 15, 2013 @ 7:11 am

  2. It would be nice if the enforcers would also obey the laws, unlike the meter reader I observed yesterday crossing against the light at Oak and Central. I see high school students all year long make that crossing and have never witnessed another pedestrian so willfully ignore the traffic laws.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — August 15, 2013 @ 7:22 am

  3. I find 25mph easy to obey with a stickshift, as it’s right at shift point btw 2nd & 3rd gear (on mine anyway). With automatic I often use cruise control, especially on wider streets like Lincoln where it’s easy to drift up to 30 or higher.

    The lack of enforcement is obvious to me as it is to post 1. I’ve noticed A LOT more tailgating, ill-advised passing and other behavior from drivers visibly frustrated by my 25 pace. It really does seem to have increased.

    Comment by dave — August 15, 2013 @ 8:12 am

  4. Question for the chief:

    It is widely believed that much of the property and violent crime in Alameda is committed by Oaklanders. At the same time, this belief is loudly criticized as racist by a fair number of people.

    Does APD keeps stats on criminals’ city of residence? If there are no specific stats, can the chief provide general comment on this subject?

    Comment by dave — August 15, 2013 @ 8:16 am

  5. I am happy to hear that Alameda will be back up to four traffic officers soon. I hope that one of them will make the stretch of Central between 8th and Webster part of his or her beat. The speeding along that stretch is egregious, and the crosswalk at Central and Page– recently repainted to add visibility, though it hasn’t had much affect on driver behavior– is routinely ignored when pedestrians are in it. Lots of kids and seniors use this crosswalk as access to Washington Park or Spritzer’s Cafe. I often see them stranded in the middle of the street as cars continue to zoom by, not stopping. It boggles the mind that drivers do this.

    I’ve also noticed an uptick in tailgaters. One thing that works (sometimes) is tapping the brakes several times quickly, so that my brake lights flash. That can get people to back off, if they are paying attention.

    Comment by Kristen — August 15, 2013 @ 8:49 am

  6. It’s all I can say is were very lucky to live in Alameda and have a great police force. The Crime stats in Oakland are off the charts. Having worked in Oakland and in the inner city you really appreciate not being on guard every second. A lot of residents in Oakland are prisoners in their own homes.

    Comment by interesting Times — August 15, 2013 @ 8:55 am

  7. I remember the days when Measure A and the voice of the people was respected, when the 25 mph speed limit was enforced, and when motorists yielded to pedestrians at crosswalks. Alameda has since become so anti-police and anti-middle class that it’s barely recognizable anymore. We’re building “below market rate” housing everywhere for no good reason and people complain about racism every time our police officers try to do their jobs and keep our city safe.

    Comment by not_a_developer — August 15, 2013 @ 9:04 am

  8. Even if the crime stats prove that 85% of crime is from off island perps, the knee jerk pronouncements that of course it’s “them”, without any apparent regard or interest for actual facts, is to me indicative of pretty racist attitudes. As for ” no good reason” for trying to regulate affordable housing, it’s ironic that the same commenter thinks people who are concerned about the issue are attacking the middle class. What world do you live in? The interrelation of all this is extremely complicated and I’m not going to argue that building out every available inch of space with subsidized housing is going to magically fix anything, be it class or race issues or anything else, but if we let the market dictate everything with the objective to insure the upwardly mobile are somehow favored we end up moving Alameda more toward being a gated community than anything. The people who bitch about coddling the huddled masses also seem to be loudest to condemn people who are upwardly mobile but happy to purchase expensive homes like those at Bayport. The xenophobes want it both ways. The planet is under a lot of pressure and our American living standard is under assault, but like the old Pogo quote, “the enemy is us”, that is collective us as in collective responsibility. Interesting times alright.

    Comment by M.I. — August 15, 2013 @ 9:57 am

  9. I do agree about the tailgating. I try to stay at 25 mph, and invariably someone gets up on my tail and occasionally honks, annoyed that I am not speeding. I sometimes just pull over and let them speed past.
    One thing I have noticed is that the police/cars congregate whenever there is an arrest going on. The other day I saw a fellow under arrest or questioning, sitting on the curb, cuffed, and there were four or five cars around the intersection of Fernside and Broadway where this was happening. There did not appear to be any other action. It did pop into my mind “I get the concept of back up, but five police cars for one guy, who is already cuffed and sitting on the curb, obviously under control?” There may have been an excellent reason for that, but I have seen this “congregating” in other situations, too, and wondered about it. As a civilian, I might be off base in second guessing police methods, but this one kind of mystifies me.
    In all, I feel very safe in this town, and really appreciate the professionalism and care of our police force.

    It may be good if the APD shared statistics about where and who does the crime in Alameda. We constantly hear that it is people “from Oakland” who do all the crime and that we cannot have amenities here because it will “attract undesireable elements.” That was one of the big anti-theater/parking garage arguments. Has crime increased on Park St. and near the theater? What kinds of crime are going up/down? Having hard data, rather than speculation might be helpful in making civic decisions.

    Comment by Kate Quick,. — August 15, 2013 @ 10:00 am

  10. I’m glad to see Chief Rolleri’s post here–and I also want to commend him on his 3-point shots in the game against AFD recently. More and better community-oriented policing, including stronger electronic and social media platform use, is a good thing.

    More importantly, it is good to know that traffic enforcement will be strengthened soon.

    I, too recall the frequent site of APD motorcycle officers along Otis and elsewhere when wee first moved to Alameda in 1997, and have regretted the decline in the number of visible officers on the streets. I frequently see minor violations–speeding, improper turns, double-parking, and a host of other infractions as I ride around Alameda. (There are bike, pedestrian, and auto/truck violations in proportional numbers but the motor vehicle operators can do far more damage to other road users so I am more concerned about them.)

    I suspect that many of the scofflaw drivers are islanders who may feel that a sense of “ownership” (nativism) entitles them to speed or bend the rules because they are in a hurry. I hope they get lots of APD officer “autographs,” too.

    Comment by Jon Spangler — August 15, 2013 @ 10:44 am

  11. I do miss Officer Ellis !
    I never thought I would be saying that about a Police Officer who nailed me ‘so do speak” quite often , the last time was just before He retire “did He know He was dying ?’ the trffic stop went like that , You again , get out of my face before I change my mind and slow down’
    I have .
    I do like most in the City have an enormous respect for the APD , without them Alameda would be just like Oakland , a killing zone , they are the only one keeping us relatively safe one bridge away , I have hower for the last year seen like everyone else a degradation of the system , it seem officers are afraid to pull peoples over, on the big plus side in these treaffic stop they have arrested people on parole violaton , people with criminal record , people transporting or dealing with drub and I am not talking an ounce of pot .
    As far as speed limit it seem to have taken a back seat , truck barrel down Broadway at any time of the day or night in total impunity , to a point resident do wonder if City Hall did not pass directives to that effect. car use the center divider to race each other.
    people with a record have second thought about crossing the bridges and it is fine with us , we do not need bars on our window , cyclone fence and the like , should the OPD do the same thing crime would change there too .

    Comment by mijoka — August 15, 2013 @ 11:05 am

  12. As far as aggressive driving goes this UC Berkeley study was released yesterday.

    So those with the most expensive cars were found to be the most aggressive. The one exception to this was that the most inconsiderate drivers were those who drove the Prius. This is something I have noticed after almost being run down by Prius’s several time in Alameda.

    Comment by frank — August 15, 2013 @ 11:24 am

  13. #9

    “One thing I have noticed is that the police/cars congregate whenever there is an arrest going on. The other day I saw a fellow under arrest or questioning, sitting on the curb, cuffed, and there were four or five cars around the intersection of Fernside and Broadway where this was happening. There did not appear to be any other action. It did pop into my mind “I get the concept of back up, but five police cars for one guy, who is already cuffed and sitting on the curb, obviously under control?” There may have been an excellent reason for that, but I have seen this “congregating” in other situations, too, and wondered about it. As a civilian, I might be off base in second guessing police methods, but this one kind of mystifies me.”

    Were fortunate we can have 5 police cars for backup in making some arrests. Just because someone was arrested on Fernside and Broadway doesn’t mean it only takes one officer. It might have been 4-5 officers in persuit of the one they arrested and some are a lot more dangerous than others no matter what the crime. I’m going to take Wild Axx Guess and Say he Probably wasn’t out T P ing your house Kate.

    Comment by interesting Times — August 15, 2013 @ 12:11 pm

  14. My intent was not to be critical, but find out why it works like that, because it seems to be odd to me. I will trust what the Chief has to say, because this must be related to some policing protocol I don’t understand.

    Comment by Kate Quick,. — August 15, 2013 @ 2:48 pm

  15. 14. I’ve seen similar things like this, Kate. My husband had a fender bender, no one hurt, cars off to the side, no need to direct traffic around it). There were at least four police cars there and a paramedic vehicle. I can see sending the paramedics just in case but the “motorcade” approach to almost every situation (the gang’s all here for heart attacks as well) seems excessive. I, too, would appreciate the official word on this.

    Comment by Denise Shelton — August 15, 2013 @ 4:37 pm

  16. At least this isn’t the Problem.

    In Oakland, average police response time to top-priority calls – such as burglaries – is about 17 minutes

    Maybe this is why the People at Bayport are concerned about Crime at the new Target. It also has a In and Out.

    Walmart off Hegenberger Road in East Oakland looks like a typical Walmart, with thousands of people coming through its doors every day, buying everything from flat-screen televisions and groceries to luggage.

    But the parking lot – which is bordered by other businesses including a Starbucks and a Wingstop restaurant – hints at tightened security. Police have two parking places reserved for them at all times. There are multiple security cameras. On a recent weekday, a private security company had a truck parked outside the store’s front doors with lights flashing. Black-market vendors roam the parking lot selling DVDs and CDs.

    This store had 713 calls for police service in 2012, and officers were sent 293 times, police data showed. Of those calls, 41 were for auto burglaries in progress.

    In Oakland, average police response time to top-priority calls – such as burglaries – is about 17 minutes, and Wasserman is looking for improvement and developing a plan for these buildings as part of his mission.

    Repeat calls, Wasserman said, offer an opportunity for “officers to start to pay attention and figure out what’s actually going on,” he said. “If you don’t, there will be another thing there and another thing.

    “It’s particularly important,” he said, “in an environment like Oakland, where you have limited police resources.”

    Comment by interesting Times — August 15, 2013 @ 5:04 pm

  17. Dear All: Thank you for your comments. The Police Chief is on vacation this week. When he returns he will likely respond to some of the questions raised in response to his post.

    Comment by Alexander Nguyen, Assistant City Manager — August 15, 2013 @ 5:21 pm

  18. Friends of ours who live in Rockridge came home to find their home broken into, their valuables stolen, and much ransacking. They called the OPD and were asked if the burglars were still there. When they said no, please just send someone to do prints and take a police report they were told the OPD only was handling burglaries in progress and they would have to file the report of the crime themselves and they had no one available to do fingerprints. The loss was in the tens of thousands of dollars. The insurance company did not want to pay up because the police did not come and do the report themselves. I am so grateful that we don’t have Oakland’s issues. And I am grateful for the APD.

    Comment by Kate Quick,. — August 15, 2013 @ 6:36 pm

  19. someone got their fact mistaken here Oakland Police response is over 40 mn , residential , vehicle burglary much longer unless someone is in the area , they do not investigate them simply take a report. , I have a clear recollection of very good friend leaving below mills college a bunch of guys were harassing the 2 housewives , when he called the police he was told it would be 2 hours , so he told the dispatcher send the coroner I am going to straight up these low life myself , within second there was an helicopter hovering and an entire squadron of car closed up the streets , interestingly most of them were taken away in handcuff , he got a lecture from the Sargent and the Sargent got one He will never forget . At this time the OPD cannot respond to any situation in a timely manner , they are short staffed beyond ridicule
    then the paper work .
    I do work in Oakland in many cases shoplifter are let go because the response time can be 4 hours ..
    Alameda within 5 minutes top the APD is here , available .
    they do what Oakland does not they enforce the laws and it make a difference , how many of you sleep with windows open , in your bed , in many part of Oakland peoples sleep on the floor waking up the next day happy to have made it another night .
    This is what many of my co-worker do .
    For as much as I hate to be pulled over , it remind me someone is watching .
    Thank you APD if only we could get the same service from the AFD

    Comment by mijoka — August 15, 2013 @ 9:21 pm

  20. When we had a house fire some years ago, the AFD was wonderful. They stopped the fire, protected our things well, and came back to check for hot spots and on us the next day. This was not a small fire. We were not home at the time and lost part of the second floor, the attic and the roof. I am forever grateful to them for their work.

    Comment by Kate Quick,. — August 15, 2013 @ 10:39 pm

  21. “5 police cars for one guy” Reminiscent of the swarm of police cars on the beach watching Raymond Zack die. The culture at APD apparently has not changed for the better yet. Unfortunately, this “penny wise pound foolish” attitude is what APD has become nationally known for.
    What ever became of that poor guy who was beaten up in front of the Police Dept after being jumped at the 7/11 across the street?

    Comment by vigi — August 16, 2013 @ 9:29 am

  22. Someone said he stopped Drinking Slurpees. Lines were to long.

    Comment by "Oh Thank Heaven for 7-Eleven" — August 16, 2013 @ 9:49 am

  23. #18. Kate sorry to burst your bubble but break-ins also occur in Alameda. My friend Sandy’s house got broken in near Lum school. They had to wait a few days before APD could come and take prints/investigate. The officer was on vacation. Not just “oakland” problems.

    Comment by AlamedanFromWebsterToParkSt — August 16, 2013 @ 10:46 am

    • Sorry that you have such negative view of the APD , I do not and I should having harvested enough speeding ticket to wall paper my office , you know in retrospect like the spanking from my parent I deserved each and everyone of them , my speeding then contributed to noise , degradation of the streets .
      The facts are here and no one can contest them you are 100 times safer than Oakland , not my saying the statistic speak for themselves. 100 murders in Oakland 1 in Alameda
      How is it possible that 3 bridges and one tunnel make so much difference , the peoples in black and white at large enforced the laws , much to the chagrin of the so called Liberal , liberty and freedom stop when you interfere with someone else freedom , very basic .
      Oakland used to be a great City to leave it is pretty much chaos , the AC transit was the absolute best transportation on which countless Cities around the US took as example .
      Look at what it is now , make no mistake City hall really want Alameda to do the same , like if the Homeless and peoples on welfare will ever be able to support the School , never mind themselves .

      There is only one reason , they do the jobs they are paid for , By the way Broadway and Fernside do not meet , never did .
      Why there are several cars for any calls , it is very simple one unit intercept , second is a back up , when the situation become agitated or when the person involve in the stop come out with a positif criminal back ground more come.
      and rightfully so because no one know what they have , did and intentions .

      As far as the Raymond Zack tragic death ,I very much criticize them and still do they only like you needed to remove their uniform. new rules have been implemented They still need to mandate them to know how to swim in that cesspool we call the bay.
      Talking about it , do you know should I have been present , someone taken my picture , I would have been subject of criminal prosecution in my former Country for non assistance of person in danger ,
      All of you who stood by did nothing , why?
      you want to change the system in the same time cutting out all income for the Lawyers involved in Ambulance chasing , pass a State law to that effect , kind a funny the audience has become very quiet .
      Typical !
      My only take on the APD they do not enforce the noise and speed hard enough . You get pulled over because your light don’t work tough luck it cost less than a dollar . Move to Oakland , Cheap houses …..

      Comment by mijoka — August 16, 2013 @ 9:46 pm

  24. well the responses are more colorful than the original post. It’s been long known that Alameda has an idiosyncratic devotion to traffic enforcement, which probably worked well to curb other kinds of crime in the past. I suspect that approach will begin to break down when our population rises towards 100K. That said, comparing a metro city of half a million across the water with no real physical boundaries between it and another 2 million inhabitants to Alameda’s 70K is a bit uninformed to say the least. that we bark about particular intersections being a problem is a luxury.

    As for our PD history, it has been checkered. I objectively observe there have been plusses and minuses on the force. I did not know Ellis was gone — i remember photographing him and his vehicle many times. I can still see in my mind his name on the front fender of his bike. We have had good experiences and we have had truly atrocious, hideous experiences with the Island Force, from radio misuse to abuse of the jail to heroic rescues.

    i think it is best to go forward now with eyes wide open about police service here and put aside the past. The old ways of getting things done will not work any more. You just will not be able to pull every newcomer over so as to run his plates and learn his character any more — the numbers will stand against that procedure. If you want to pick on Oakland, that place has shown how an understaffed, underfunded detective force has resulted in perp walks for murder, arson, theft, battery and everything in-between.

    What we want here, if funding is to be realistically discussed, is the Supreme Court mandated list of every sworn officer’s name, rank and salary. Then we can begin to talk about numbers of staff in respective departments with some realistic numbers. Then we can talk hard and fast about real budgetary needs and there will be no more “proving a point” on the shore by letting a man die because “there was insufficient funding for the water-based rescue.”

    As for housing, it is nonsensical to slam lower-income projects when the clear drive is toward skyrocket high value housing — that is where the money is. And if there is any wave that will wreck the middle class here it will be in the form of $3000 one bedroom apartments and million dollar estates and half million dollar condos. People who can afford that kind of stuff rob people in a different way, so of course violent street crime will drift over the bridge from other places.

    Let’s not be Pollyanna and all Norman Rockwell about public safety here. We want realistic approaches to things that deal with present and upcoming real situations. I deal in my job with crime victims every single day. This is not a field for wannabees or distortionists. We are going to 100k population, lower or upper or middle or non-income whatever. Lets talk about how to realistically deal with this for the sake of our children, if no other reason.

    Comment by Eoin — August 16, 2013 @ 9:28 pm

  25. @eoin
    Sorry to prove you wrong but indeed throughout the USA basic traffic enforcement always had drastic effect on crime , somehow Criminal don’t like to be pulled over , an established fact backed up by the national crime data base .
    As far as expensive house , sorry you get for what you work for , during the recession I had a kid at the university , no grant no nothing , at a time peoples were crying they did not have a job , I had 2 . Shame on me for working 2 jobs , my regular one and the other picking up trash from the homeless , dirty needles by the bucket , alarm call in the middle of the night “copper thieves” ever found yourself in the middle of a strange City calling 911 and being told it will be 1 hour at the best while you knew the thieves were desperate and ready for anything , then you come to appreciate the APD
    As the result my kid graduated from University without debt and I did not take a day off or vacation for 8 Years .
    Every work done on my house was with permit , my tax bill reflect it . I paid my taxes ion my second job , if I could do it anyone can as to top it I am physically handicapped .
    I am not sorry to own a house worth something , I have worked all my life for it , you all want it but no work , it remind me of the last article of the Times magazines the opt out want back in again , cannot get the job they abandoned .
    They should have read the Fables from the French Jean de La Fontaine the Ant and the grasshopper actually in French it is cicada “it might not have sound politically correct” it was written in the mid 1600 and still so accurate .
    As I said the City of Oakland is looking for few braves to take back their City in the mean time let’s the APD do their work.
    The OPD Officers to which I meet almost daily wish they could . 100 murders in Oakland 1 in Alameda “store thief” I think I rather have the APD ……

    Comment by mijoka — August 16, 2013 @ 10:29 pm

  26. 24. amen

    Comment by M.I. — August 17, 2013 @ 10:50 am

  27. I mis-spoke in #9. Of course it was at Broadway and Tilden Way, not Fernside. Sorry about that.

    Comment by Kate Quick,. — August 18, 2013 @ 3:11 pm

  28. Eoin: Given that Alameda is an island, and even counting BFI, there isn’t that much land to expand into…given we have Measure A and residents are serious about defending it,..given there are serious restrictions regarding residential housing on the old Base; I seriously doubt Alameda’s population will ever reach 100K. Over the past 50 years, our pop has been remarkably stable. When the NAS was booming, the pop did rise above 80k, but that turned out to be short lived.

    Comment by vigi — August 18, 2013 @ 4:02 pm

  29. Kate it is ok we are all human ,
    was it that the guy high on drug that pulled a knife on the Officers , in southern California and most of the US , his hide would have been used as strainer ….they would have cited , and executed Him without a second thought .
    Alameda PD is not very flexible , yet they have a pretty good standing , the Law is the law .
    As for the Peoples complaining about the speed not being enforced as it used to be , there is a simple explanation , few years ago the Insurance industry pushed for a law to stop Police Officers from issuing City Violation instead of moving violation, this for one single reason they would be able to increase their fee at will .
    Since then traffic Violation went down , in short the APD is working for the public not the corrupt insurance Co.
    The main insurance Co behind the measure AAA . n
    You can get the crime data online , the only thing omitted is name , race or ethnicity . we want to be politically correct …
    However if you do take the time to look over the crime blotter every week , you will find than most crime and all but one shooting was from peoples from outside Alameda .
    It is about to change as City Hall want more low income housing , as a token of thanks , some are putting their fund together to buy a house in the same street as our Mayor , to open an 1/2 way house for people on Parole , totally legal , if we can have then in our neighborhood , they can have them as neighbors . Democracy at it’s best .

    Comment by mijoka — August 18, 2013 @ 9:31 pm

  30. #5, IMHO, it is very dangerous to tap your brakes in front of a tailgater; I assume you’ve never been rear-ended. I gradually slow down until the tailgater either changes lanes or backs off. I wait until there’s a decent gap and then go back up to my prior speed; if the car tailgates again, I repeat the process. And the annoying thing is that most of the time I am going 3-5 miles OVER the speed limit and I still get tailgated. And it’s especially annoying in The Tube, where a fender bender can back up traffic for quite a while.

    Comment by Linda on Otis St. — August 19, 2013 @ 6:22 pm

  31. Okay everyone, I apologize for not replying to all of the comments sooner. I was in fact taking a vacation week when the comments were made, and have been playing catch up since I returned. In no particular order, here are my responses to some of the queries: Regarding comment #4, here are the numbers: In 2012, we had 2,396 arrests. Of those, 1,594 (63%) listed Alameda as their place of residence. 882 (37%) listed their residence as someplace other than Alameda. In 2013 year to date, we have made 1,554 arrests. Of those 876 (56%) live in Alameda and 678 (44%) live elsewhere. Personally, I’m not interested in breaking it down by city. However, anyone who is interested can make a public records act request to get the information.

    Regarding police cars “congregating” or otherwise showing an excessive response, my answer is that it depends on the circumstances of the call. Typically, our officers ride in patrol cars as solo beat units. There are exceptions, the most common of which is when an officer is in training. In that case, there will be 2 officers in a car. On cold cases, the norm is to dispatch only one unit. For in progress calls, a minimum of two units are dispatched. So, if two training units are sent to the same call, you will get four officers. Again, that does not happen often, but we had 7 officers in training this summer, so it was definitely more likely. If there is a foot pursuit, bank robbery, or other serious call, it may be appropriate to send as many as 3-4 units. I have no idea about the call referenced with the handcuffed person seated on the curb. The location is not accurate, but if I can get the actual location and a date, I may be able to explain it.

    For traffic collisions, our typical response is as follows: For a minor collision with no injuries, we send one officer. For any injury collision, we send a minimum of two. However, if there is a collision at a major intersection or on a busy street, we may send additional officers to direct traffic around the collision scene. Additionally, there could be multiple statements to take or disabled vehicles to tow. There could also be a scenario where two officers are dispatched, but a supervisor shows up for a few minutes and now you have three.So again, it just depends. We train our officers to get back into service as soon as they are no longer needed on a call. I cannot tell you that it never happens, but for the most part, officers that are at a call were requested to be there because of the circumstances.If anyone is interested, we offer a couple of citizen police academies during the year. It’s a great way to learn exactly what we do and why we do it. I hope some of you can find the time to take advantage of it someday.

    Comment by prolleri — August 30, 2013 @ 12:43 pm

  32. @32
    No complaint about police “proliferation here” , When some thug the to break my neighbor back door in the middle of the night when I called 911 there was 3 cruisers right here within minutes , no sirens no lights , too bad my dog scared them away , they left as discretely as they came {AFD could learn from them}
    Leaving on a major street , having seen many accident , some pretty severe , never seen any police meeting lasting more than necessary , my only comment would be why are the heavy truck not pulled over for speeding ?
    -One has to keep in mind the very same peoples complaining are the very same which asked that the Oakland PD be more Friendly , well 20 plus years later we all the results , if anyone is interested I will be renting an Army transport vehicle to conduct tours in Oakland at night …
    then I will drop you 5 block away from your residence so you can truly experience what piece of mind is ,
    Enjoy Alameda for what it is now , I have a very strong feeling once all these low income housing are built , you will miss he almost peace and serenity . As far as I am concerned , just in case I like many of my neighbors I do keep a couples of 12 gauges very well oiled and always loaded {I do do not belong to the NRA and do not follow their philosophy }
    It is not the Bridges which make the difference it is the black and white , absolutely no one else .
    There is no perfection in law Enforcement , judging by the results in Alameda , 90% of the bay area town would love to have such record , not my saying , the Crime stat saying .

    Comment by mijoka — August 31, 2013 @ 9:47 pm

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