Gov. Gavin Newsom has ordered California Highway Patrol (CHP) officers to join police forces in Oakland to combat a rise in violent crimes, many of which have targeted Asian Americans in the streets of Chinatown.
Background: Newsom’s order on Wednesday came after Mayor Libby Schaaf sent a formal request for CHP support in Oakland’s commercial corridors and International Boulevard. That request came after Chinatown leaders — led by Carl Chan, president of the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce — called on Newsom to declare a state of emergency in the city.
- While Newsom approved additional law enforcement, he did not place Oakland in a state of emergency. “One does not declare a state of emergency to assert the acuity of a crisis that needs to be addressed head on,” he said at a news conference, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
- Schaaf, on the other hand, is grateful for the governor’s “rapid response.” “Beware, there is going to be more enforcement,” she warned, KRON 4 noted.
- The additional resources would help curb “the reckless driving that kills people,” as well as robberies that involve vehicles. She cited a July 26 incident as an example of the latter, in which former U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer was allegedly assaulted and robbed near Jack London Square.
We are responding to the demands of our residents for more law enforcement safety. Thank you Gov. @GavinNewsom for granting my request to bring additional CHP traffic enforcement into Oakland’s commercial corridors and along International Blvd. pic.twitter.com/T0yaBMAPja
— Libby Schaaf (@LibbySchaaf) August 12, 2021
Other measures: Aside from deploying CHP officers to Oakland, Newsom said an investment of more than $400 million will address street and hate crimes statewide. Most of this budget is being offered to cities through grants, according to KGO.
- Part of this is a $156 million budget for non-carceral alternatives in fighting anti-Asian violence, which Newsom signed last month. This is the largest funding plan allocated by any state to address anti-Asian hate crimes.
- Schaaf, for her part, vowed to continue to look for more resources, stating, “I am going to continue to try and get adequate staffing in the Oakland police department, especially for investigations,” KPIX 5 reported.
Featured Image Screenshot via Calif. Gov. Gavin Newsom