Officers will patrol the area through the summer
By Sam Catanzaro
Two additional police officers will be coming to the beach around the Pacific Palisades this summer.
At its meeting on June 9, the PPCC unanimously passed a motion to approve a letter requesting Council District 11 discretionary funds to allow for the assignment of additional officers to the LAPD Palisades Beach Detail this summer. There are currently two members of the Beach Detail, LAPD Officers Margin and Bermudez. The PPCC says, however, that these two officers are being stretched thin due to increased homelessness in the area. The PPCC writes it would like to see at least four but no fewer than two more officers to aid Officers Margin and Bermudez.
“An influx of visitors to our beach and hillside areas regularly occurs during the summer months. Families flock to the beaches and many children and young adults participate in summer camps and the Junior Lifeguards program at Will Rogers State Beach. At the same time, the Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness (PPTFH) informs us that many more persons experiencing homelessness (PEH) traditionally come here in the summer and are already beginning to arrive in greater numbers this year,” the PPCC writes. “The efforts of our Beach Detail are critical to maintaining public safety, but will be stretched thin with the increased numbers of PEH and other visitors expected during the coming months. Last summer, we were fortunate to have four additional officers assigned to the Beach Detail – for a total of six officers. We need the same number of officers assigned this summer. Their efforts are critical to ensure and maintain public safety for everyone – community members, beach visitors, PPTFH volunteers, outreach workers and PEH alike.”
“We understand that CD11 has discretionary funds which may be used to fund overtime for additional officers to be assigned to the Palisades Beach Detail. We’re also told that Councilmember Koretz has authorized the use of CD 5 discretionary funds for overtime for additional LAPD West Division patrol officers in Westwood and other areas of that District,” the letter continues.
Councilmember Bonin’s office, however, told Palisades News that discretionary funds will be used towards combating homelessness, saying that the LAPD budget is at a record high already.
“The budget for the Los Angeles Police Department is at a record high, dwarfing expenditures for everything else in the city. For the remainder of Councilmember Bonin’s time in office, he is focusing use of his discretionary dollars on efforts to address the homelessness crisis and on strategies to prevent homelessness. He is funding shared housing programs and organizations doing outreach and providing casework to unhoused individuals, and he is providing money to groups working to prevent homelessness and support people at risk of homelessness, such as tenants, foster youth, and survivors of domestic violence,” reads the statement from Bonin’s office.
Last week, however, the PPCC announced in a newsletter that two additional beach patrol officers have been assigned to the Palisades due to LAPD administrative changes.
“We are pleased to learn now that Capt. Jonathan Tom, LAPD West Division Commander, has advised PPTFH that he has been able, through administrative changes, to assign two additional beach patrol officers to the Palisades this summer!” the PPCC said. “We are grateful for this positive outcome and thank Capt. Tom for his ongoing strong support for the public safety of our community.”