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Safer Cities is Still Working, Says LAPD Report

By Eric Richardson
Published: Tuesday, March 08, 2011, at 06:53PM
_IGP0173 Ed Fuentes

A July 2008 Skid Row Neighborhood Walk passes by an individual sprawled on the sidewalk.

A report delivered to the Police Commission today defends the four-year-old Safer Cities Initiative, saying that the programs introduced in the Skid Row area have allowed the community to "reclaim their public spaces" and have made it possible for service providers "to operate without the fear of crime and violence."

The document, signed by LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and prepared in response to a December report by the L.A. Community Action Network, cites dramatically decreased crime statistics as support for its claim that the quality of life has improved in the Central City East neighborhood.

Numbers comparing 2010 to 2005 show serious crimes down 47 percent, and "street deaths" down 60 percent.

The report says that 26 percent of those arrested under the Safer Cities program were diverted into the "Streets or Services" program, which offers misdemeanor offenders the chance to enter a rehabilitation program instead of going to jail. That program was suspended recently due to budget cuts, but the report says that a new funding source has been identified.

The document—including the LACAN report—can be downloaded as a PDF from the City's servers.

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