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Friday, September 06, 2013

The special crime watch meeting was packed

Miami City Hall filled up last night with irate Coconut Grove neighbors, many who have recently been burglarized, due to the shortage of police officers in the area. The chambers were so full that people sat on the floor, just so they could fit in, others trickled out the glass doors.

Mayor Tomas Regalado, District 2 Commissioner Marc Sarnoff and a slew of police officers spoke about the problem, along with the neighbors who have suffered. Each had a turn at the podium.

1,144 police officers cover the City of Miami, many feel that is not enough. The figure remains the same all these years, so as population grew, the police force did not. The Mayor says that to hire 100 more officers, which is Comm. Sarnoff's wish, would cost the city an additional $10 million, which it does not have.

In about a week, two more new officers will patrol the Grove. Is this enough?

In the end, as usual, most of it fell on deaf ears. What was the final solution? I don't think the neighbors were satisfied at the conclusion of the meeting.

A few people suggested private patrols like neighborhoods like Bay Heights has. This is where the neighbors tax themselves to pay for the patrols overnight or whenever needed. There are patrol cars and guards on the streets then.

Also, license plate check points, or cameras that take pictures of each license plate that enters a neighborhood is an idea. That's all well and good, but it won't get the people on foot and on bicycle. Speaking of bicycles, a friend of mine who rides his bicycle and doesn't have a car, wanted to attend the meeting but was concerned about leaving his bicycle outside City Hall while the meeting was going on. He didn't want to return and see it had been stolen. Talk about the icing on the cake.

I invited him to attend with me, by car, but he declined. That's another way theft has effected a way of life. You can't even be comfortable riding and parking your bicycle.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not so long ago I stood outside my home on occasion, on Gifford, always early AM Monday, after Sunday when people appeared to be more relaxed about their car & garage doors & couldn't count on my fingers & toes the number of folks going from door to door looking for an easy entry point until they heard a hammer click, I filled an old tool box & attaché case left out barely observable with about 75 lbs of cement and watched as them attempted to peddle down Gifford, and other little tricks - - - crime decreased on Gifford until my wife caught me!

September 06, 2013 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is the unfortunate socioeconomic reality of high unemployment, underemployment, low wages, lack of major industries with exception of low paying seasonal tourist industry jobs, high taxes and on top of that public corruption and malfeasance. We are totally out of balance in Miami and just turning the city into a highly policed place is simply a temporary band considering everything else is going to stay the same.

September 06, 2013 12:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Also, license plate check points, or cameras that take pictures of each license plate that enters a neighborhood is an idea."

Big brother much?

September 06, 2013 1:10 PM  
Anonymous AM said...

Light deters crime. Why dont we start by trimming some trees around light posts. This would lighten up the streets and sidewalks decreasing potential hiding spots for criminals. Our streets in CG are dark because we dont ever trim the trees!!

If the police are not patrolling but stationary waiting for a call or on break, why not make the corner of 27th and Bird a mandatory "stationary stop" for working officers. Lots of foot traffic enters from 27th because of the metrorail. A watchful eye on "visitors" might deter some crime. Especially because this area has had a problem with rape lately.

Hey Grapevine, can you post the emails of all who atteneded last night...comisioners, police cheif, neighborhood commander, etc....including the guy with the Bee Gee's haircut who was "speaking" on our behalf. They all asked to hear from us...I for one would like them to hear my voice.

Lastly, it was suggested that we should show up "in force" at the budget hearing next week to force the hand of the comissioners to redistribute wealth to serve our needs. I find this a bit selfish. The police may be short handed, but so is the DCF, Teachers, Firemen, and every other govt office. Everyone is overworked and understaffed. We are all expected to work more and paid less. This is the new norm. I already pay more taxes than Coral Gables, and I dont have services like the Gables, so dont ask me to increase my tax contribution.

September 06, 2013 2:27 PM  
Blogger David McBurnett said...

I had to leave when Sarnoff would not shut up....

September 06, 2013 3:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, we are paying for a police department with low morale and a general apathy towards the communities they are supposed to be protecting. Many of them want to do as little as possible when they are on the taxpayers clock but will drive 120 mph to the off duty jobs, in their city issued cars, where they supplement their incomes.

I have been in law enforcement for over 20 years on the state and federal level and was always prohibited from having off duty employment. To say that I'm disappointed in the level of professionalism in many of our South Florida police officers is an understatement.

September 06, 2013 5:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guys is the administration of the city and the staffof police that are not letting cops be cops

A grove officer

September 07, 2013 1:03 PM  
Blogger lidj tafari said...

The police spend so much time at the quick stop or posted up with there lights flashing ut side the clubs that its hard to really believe they dont have resources.But the key to stopping crime is knowing your neighbors and saying hi to people when they walk down the street whether you know them or not.Crime has the tendency to make people huddle away in there homes,avoid eye contact and keep to your self when really neighborhood discourse between friends and strangers is whats needed.closer bonds.

September 07, 2013 2:10 PM  
Blogger Grapevine said...

Your bicycle riding friend has got issues. Has he thought of getting a good bike lock?

He just didn't want to go, as witnessed by his turning down your ride.

September 07, 2013 5:05 PM  

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