Tag Archives: crime

Comments on Monday night shooting

Today, I want to comment on Monday night’s lame “anomaly” of a shooting. (Actually Sunday “night” since it was technically just 1AM Monday.) It may be lame for me to even try to comment on an incident I didn’t witness firsthand. Hopefully it will help OPD find the perps. Oakland needs all the policing assistance it can muster. Above: Photo of car very similar to perps’ getaway car. [Car updated 4/27 5:45PM due to OPD correction. Originally media reports said the getaway veh was a Dodge Avenger. Now police say it was a newer Toy Camry.] Continue reading

Behind Government Budget Problems

Sutro Baths Steps by sirgious
Sutro Baths Steps, a photo by sirgious on Flickr.

This month’s post by Gail the Actuary explains our country’s (and the world’s) economic situation better than I ever could, so here it is.

This obviously speaks for Oakland as well, since we’re one of hundreds of US cities built upon a once lustrous but increasingly potholed and cracked foundation of cheap (and now all burnt up) oil and gasoline.

We’ll need to find other means of social lubrication, and in the meantime, don’t be poor!

The ramifications touch every part of our society, and thus I’ve tagged this with all categories. Put on your systems thinking cap and get reading!

Oakland Police Foundation Launched!!

After so many years of waiting on my part, the Oakland Police Foundation is finally a going concern! Hooooray! LA and NYC have had these for years.

So… if you have a few million $$ you don’t know what to do with, take a portion of it and donate today! I already have. You can also volunteer, sponsor, etc.

Why should you donate to the OPF?

Continue reading

Making Crime Unprofitable

This post comes in the wake the author getting assaulted on Broadway at 25th Street over the weekend.

– – –

What are our society’s financial incentives to keep crime down?  How are financial incentives set up right now?

Is the Mayor of Oakland (Ron Dellums) paid according to how safe our city is? Hell no.  Same for the OPD Chief.  Does he get a bonus for a safer city? Should he? I believe so.

Continue reading

Free Parking and How to Stop a Bullet

VSmoothe @ABO alerts us to Oakland’s updated car parking drama today.

Here’s a relevant quote from today’s StreetsBlog:

“The root of the problem is that none of these streets were designed for cars in the first place. So I think it’s a little bit backwards for the kneejerk reaction always to be prioritizing cars.”

I agree.

Free parking is worthless to me. Parking spaces are DEAD SPACE. It’s like having zombies in your living room. You can’t put anything useful there, because the zombies are decomposing, messy, giving off poisonous gases.

Much like a cemetary, a parking lot is not so useful to the living.

If you look at old videos on youtube of people in public places, you notice that they walk all around the plazas and streetscapes haphazardly. There are no cars to watch out for. Well-to-do people are relatively free and relaxed in cities, even with the advent of streetcars, because these are slow on fixed guideways. Bicycles don’t kill pedestrians at stoplights in that era, unlike today’s cars.

Councilmember Kernighan, Shame on You and other businesses for promoting ecologically irresponsible “free parking”!

People should pay for the PRIVILEGE of leaving their oil-dripping heaps of glass, steel, vinyl and petro in our shared PUBLIC SPACES.

These spaces could otherwise be used for outdoor cafe seating, walking on wider sidewalks, REAL parks (search the net for “park(ing) day“), small sports fields — soccer, basketball, you name it; small garden plots, shrines, pull-up bars, massage tables, cooking classes, flea markets, lemonade and hotdog stands or any other socially useful purpose.

Cars and parking lots are dead zones at best. The best kind of parking lots are underground, where these polluting death beasts belong. Hidden.

I think that the best uses of these lots are for farmers markets (Temescal on Sundays), mini-golf, karaoke bars, reverting to natural habitat, housing or business spaces.

I assert everywhere and always that parking and car driver amenities should be limited to the maximum extent possible.

The street is our last common, public space we all share. What a shame for cars to gobble it all up. We should do as Copenhagen did: Transform Oakland from car-centric to people- and nature-centric! One street block at a time.

It’s all about creating a place worth caring about which is walkable, not retaining our vast WalMart parking lots, vast Oracle Arena parking lots, multitudes of BART parking lots. Walk, people! Lose weight the natural way. Avoid car payments, parking tickets, gas fill-ups, oil changes, crash liability insurance, speeding tickets, collisions, stress, boredom, fright, animal car-kill, road rage and zipcar. Work fewer hours to supporting a bad habit.

Less truly is more.

Except for public amenities. Just a few months ago, there was a bench outside my apartment complex. But it’s been removed. Lame!

***

How to stop a bullet? Jobs. People who are comfortable in life don’t go causing trouble.

Example: A new gang in LA: solar installers. (Homeboy Industries.) Could Oakland “employ” this model with a push from Van Jones, Coach Carter and FAB? Indeed, why don’t Oakland Tech and OUSD at the high school level offer vocational job skills classes? Car and bicycle and house repair, woodworking, urban agriculture and home cooking, financial literacy… you know — useful, transferable skills. I know Berkeley USD is ahead of the curve here with their elementary school gardens which supply local restaurants such as Chez Panisse and Flora under the “Green Leaf” BUSD brand; not sure about the non-food items above.

But playing devil’s advo, supporting social programs such as these from private donations and foundation funding only support more “social welfare” programs right? Which in turn support an ever-growing human population on a finite planet…

Still, I support re-localization and de-globalization, because ultimately these WILL provide more fulfillment and make the future a tad easier.

We’ll stil face famine, war, natural disaster. But at least we’ll be a bit better prepard for this future, without our up-till-now fossil-fueled cushion.

I see patterns: murders around Value Inn; Oakland women

“I see dead people”

Rump Temescal is bounded by 40th St by MacArthur BART, so I wouldn’t consider West MacArthur Temescal. It’s more Kaiser-BWay or SO40.

On SFGate today, the two women murdered by bullets at Value Inn makes me think either
(a) a John didn’t want to pay his for his “hobby”; or
(b) family or drug-related violence due to money problems.

There was another murder in this area just two weeks ago.

Crime seems to follow freeways and main streets out of west oakland (nancy nadel’s financially poor city council political district 3).

~ * ~

Oh but wait. Another woman shot in the head in East Oakland now.

So three women shot in Oakland in 12 hours. Is that a record?

Let the record also show that women only gained rights with the advent of fossil fuels… so women may not want to “go green” – because that means back to the fields and toilsome labor! (and patriarchy!)

Crime Management: Beat 4x, Uptown

Just FYI, everyone probably already knows this who cares, but OPD’s web listings of who the current PSO and NSC staff are for each beat is outdated and wrong. Just call the numbers on their page and you’ll be told the correct info.

Example:
http://oakland.crimespotting.org/beat/04X

Beat4x
Current PSO: Marcus Campos (listed incorrectly as Albert Smith)
Current NSC: Michael Sze (listed incorrectly as Monique Tsang)
Monthly NCPC Meeting: 2nd Wednesdays, 6pm, City Hall Hearing Room 3

Monique says the department is aware that it needs to update its website. This problem has existed as early as 2007-08, when I let PSO Everett in my old hood know that the site listed someone else as our PSO. (Maybe the PSOs are shifted around the city too frequently for IT to keep track?)

Current issues at athe NCPC meeting which is prioritized for the PSO, per my conversation today with Michael Sze:

  1. Prostitution on Jefferson bt 8th and 15th streets
  2. Robberies at Broadway on both sides of 14th street
  3. Graffiti around 15th~17th streets

Next meeting of the Uptown NCPC is next Wednesday the 11th.

Make sure to hit up Crimespotting.org for their new and improved crime incident maps.

Definitions:

NCPC: neighborhood crime prevention council. the city has a bunch of these, administrated by city staff (NSC)

NSC: coordinator for local NCPCs

PSO: problem solving officer – a veteran OPD officer assigned to work on quality of life problems in a particular beat of Oakland; not the same as a “walking officer.”

Walking Officer: an OPD officer assigned to walk in and get to know business owners, residents and others in a particular neighborhood, ie Temescal or Rockridge. Acts as publicly funded mall cop for a business district, but better.

Beat: A sub-division of Oakland which is patrolled by our police department, under a larger “area command.”  Oakland is still(?) under former Police Chief Wayne Tucker’s “geographic policing” management style.