by Lauren Gard
The word is out: Don't bother wearing gloves when you murder, rape, and rob in Oakland, because the Police Department has pretty much given up on using fingerprints as evidence. Although there have been 142 homicides this year and God knows how many other violent crimes, only thirty cases have been deemed high- priority enough for the department to send prints out for analysis. (That's right ï¿½ there hasn't been an in-house fingerprint unit for seven months, when it was shut down due to lack of funds and, somewhat inexplicably, staff.) You, smart reader, may know this already, as the Chron broke the story Monday. But the comments that have cropped up since on community news site digg.com are worth a read.
"And we (Californians) just elected the mayor of this town, Jerry Brown, to be the new Attorney General... Oops."
"It really doesn't make any sense. For how expensive it is to live in Oakland, the parking tickets I pay, the fact it's one of the major ports on the west coast importing everyone's playstations, ipods, nintendos, and other electronics they can't even sum up enough money to operate a full police department"
"I live in Oakland and someone broke into my house a few weeks ago. I was home with my two very young kids and there was a robber in my house (my husband was not home). EEEEK! I call the Oakland police, who find a window through which the perp entered -- fortunately, the burglar had run away once he heard me call 911. The cop says to me, "um, I guess I'll file a police report." Like this was a borderline case in terms of bothering to report it. Ah, the joys of living in Oakland."
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