October 16, 2017

Homeless Problem Demands Action -SCPD Taking Action Opinion Editorial By SCPD Chief Mills

Can we break the cycle of reactionary homeless policy at the federal, state, county and municipal level?

Billy was a Golden Glove champ in Los Angeles. Now at 50, Billy is a drug addict, homeless, and living on the streets of Santa Cruz; camping in front of the post office. SCPD officers woke Billy recently and as he rolled over to greet them, he exposed a handgun. Fortunately, the gun was a pellet gun and Billy did not reach for it. He uses it for protection.

The U.S. Post Office is a homeless camp and ground zero for the Hepatitis A outbreak. Since my arrival, I have spoken with hundreds of locals including the homeless. Almost everyone I have spoken with agrees that problems in and around the downtown area are untenable. The problems demand action. Now!

We know long-term relief is years out, and permanent housing for our homeless population is a long way off. Besieged by the impacts of an epidemic of heroin addiction and methamphetamine abuse, often resulting in bizarre and frightening behavior, the community is tired and stressed. The homeless exist in a wasteland of hopelessness, despised by some, enabled by others, but ignored by most of us, who just walk by pretending they don’t exist.

The challenge: Clean up the downtown area while treating the homeless with respect. In other words, SCPD should police the downtown with passion, while demonstrating great compassion. What SCPD will not do is pass the buck. We own it. If we don’t have the resources, we will find a way to partner with those who do. To protect this city, we will celebrate those who help and confront those who abdicate their responsibilities. SCPD polices with your consent, not as a private army, but a force for good.

From the Clock Tower to Laurel Street, from Front to Center Streets, SCPD will spend the resources needed to ensure order. All people are welcome to visit this spectacular area, including the homeless, but SCPD and SC Park Rangers are fully prepared to enforce the law evenly, thoroughly and rigorously. It is also vital that all locals create natural surveillance by visiting the mall, walking the streets, visiting stores and creating a welcoming environment. I do so regularly both on and off duty. Please join me. Our downtown is remarkable.

City of Santa Cruz Chief of Police Andrew G. Mills

October 11, 2017

Sergeant Mike Medina Retires After 28 Years

Congratulations and Happy Retirement To Sergeant Medina
Congratulations to Sergeant Mike Medina on his retirement after 28 years of service! The men and women at SCPD thanks you for the many years of dedicated, reliable and resourceful service.

During Mike’s tenure, he served in the Operations Division in the Patrol Section, Investigations Unit, and oversaw the Parks Unit. His duties included Field Training Officer, Investigations, Decoy Trainer for the K-9 Unit and a member of the Swat Team. He started the Bicycle Patrol Program on Pacific Avenue in the early 1990s.

Medina was presented with the Medal of Valor for his actions during the 1989 earthquake, as well as presented with two Hazardous Duty Awards, and one Lifesaving Award. He was promoted to Police Sergeant in 2010.

Sergeant Medina has been an outstanding example of loyalty and has been a tremendous asset to the City of Santa Cruz. His sense of humor will definitely be missed by many inside and outside of the department.

Good luck in all of your future endeavors, Mike!

October 8, 2017

Santa Cruz Police Town Hall Meeting Series Start Monday, October 9th - Come to the Meeting that best suits your schedule.

SCPD kicks off a series of Town Hall meetings this week to get input and outline public safety priorities from the community. The first community forum takes place Monday, October 9th, from 6-7 p.m. at Westlake Elementary at 1000 High Street. Attendees will engage with police staff in group workshop-style discussions regarding concerns in their neighborhood.

The meetings are designed to allow neighborhoods, community stakeholders, and police to discuss problems and to engage in the problem-solving process. Feedback in Town Hall meetings will play an essential role in future citywide public safety strategies.

All five SCPD Town Hall Meetings held throughout the city are open to the public.

Not sure which meeting to attend? Come to the Town Hall Meeting that best suits your schedule. 

Upper West Side/Mission Hill
Monday, October 9th - 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

East Side (Emeline/Market/ Upper Ocean)
Thursday, October 12th - 6:00 pm - 7:00pm

Downtown/Lower Ocean /Beach Hill
Tuesday, October 17th - 11:00 am-Noon
155 Center Street

East Side/ Midtown
(Branciforte/Seabright/ Lower Ocean /Prospect Heights)
Monday, October 23rd 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
1145 Morrissey Blvd, Santa Cruz, CA 95065

Lower Westside/ Beach Flats
Wednesday, October 25th 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

“These town hall meetings are a great opportunity to influence the future of public safety in your neighborhood. Join us! We want to hear from you.” – Andrew Mills Chief of Police

October 5, 2017

Exercise Caution. Street Smarts Safety Tip

The mission of the Street Smarts public education campaign is to reduce the number of traffic-related crashes and injuries in the City of Santa Cruz.

October 2, 2017

Coffee With A Cop Join SCPD at Kelly’s French Bakery Wednesday, October 4, 2017 from 8:30 am to 10:00 am

Coffee With A Cop
Join SCPD at Kelly’s French Bakery
Date: Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Time: 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Location: Kelly's French Bakery, 402 Ingalls St. Santa Cruz
What: Santa Cruz Police, Community, Conversation, & Coffee

September 30, 2017

Drop Off Your Unwanted Or Expired Medicines at Santa Cruz Police Department

Check out SafeRx - Talk About It event happening this Sunday, October 1st.  They will be discussing prevention efforts in the community, alternative treatment, Narcan training, and much more. This is a FREE event with activities for the whole family! 
The Santa Cruz Police Department wants to remind the community about our on-going prescription drug take-back program. This program, offered by the Santa Cruz Police Department, provides a no-cost, anonymous collection point for unwanted or expired medicines.
We have a secure, self-service collection bin in our public lobby that is available to community members Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Simply bring your unwanted or expired medicines to the police department during the hours that our public lobby is open and use the self-service bin which is clearly marked and located in the left-hand corner of the front lobby as you face the front counter.
Now is an excellent time to clean out your medicine cabinet. It is important to protect our children, families and the environment by properly disposing of unwanted or expired drugs. Medicines in the home are a leading cause of accidental poisoning and flushed, or trashed medicines can end up polluting our waters. Rates of prescription drug abuse are alarmingly high. Over half of teens abusing medicines get them from a family member or friend, including the home medicine cabinet, and often without their knowledge.

Please take advantage of the Santa Cruz Police Department’s no cost, 
anonymous collection point for your unwanted or expired medicines. Together, we can make Santa Cruz safer for all of us!

September 29, 2017

Street Smarts Satety Tip of the Week - Yield. Every Corner is a legal crosswalk.

The mission of the Street Smarts public education campaign is to reduce the number of traffic-related crashes and injuries in the City of Santa Cruz.