By Joan Schmidt
In 2014, Arcadia Police Chief Bob Guthrie established the Area Command Program to reduce crime, improve the quality of life and increase community engagement.
Prior to the last election, the city was divided into five voting districts to ensure a representative from each area. For each area, Chief Guthrie has appointed a lieutenant, accountable for understanding the issues and concerns unique to their respective area. This area commander will act as liaison with the residents, businesses and community organizations within each district. This partnership will enhance the police department’s ability to develop strategies and direct the proper resources to reduce crime and solve unique community problems.
The long-term objective is to ensure the City of Arcadia receives the most efficient and professional policing services possible.
On May 2, at the Arcadia HS Performing Arts Center, there was a “Town Hall” Meeting which explained the new Area Command Program, showed the city’s five districts, and introduced their commander lieutenants.
After this introduction, residents broke into the five area groups. Since Lieutenant Castro could not attend, our leader was Sgt. Jason Davis and he was excellent. He began telling us that burglaries were down 50%. Part of it is technology, such as the “ring program,” and importantly if you “see something, say something.” Sgt. Davis also said, “Hear something, say something.” Questions included issues of undocumented citizens, homelessness, I.C.E., Race Track protests, package thefts (also down quite a bit), people let out of prison early, AB 47, more coyotes in yards, use of drones, and mailboxes locked.
The Area Commanders are:
- Area 1 North: Lt. Roy Nakahuma, area1commander@ArcadiaCA.gov.
- Area 2 Northwest: Lt. Tom Cullen, area2commander@ArcadiaCA.gov.
- Area 3 Southwest: Lt. Brian Ortiz, area3commander@ArcadiaCA.gov.
- Area 4 Central: Lt. Vaughn Whalen, area4commander@ArcadiaCA.gov.
- Area 5 Southeast: Lt. Mike Castro, area5commander@ArcadiaCA.gov .