OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Oakland Police Chief Howard Jordan admitted that robberies “have plagued our community the last several months” but he said his department has fought back by arresting 34 robbery suspects in the past month.
Jordan said police are using computerized statistics and historical trends to identify robbery trends and have found that two distinctive groups are responsible for most of the recent robberies.
However, he didn’t disclose who those groups are.
While acknowledging that street robberies are on the rise, Jordan said his department is working hard to combat the problem and since Jan. 1 it has made arrests in connection with more than 850 violent felonies or firearm-related offenses.
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Most of the robbery-related arrests involved firearms or replica firearms, according to Jordan.
He said Oakland police officers have recovered more than 560 firearms so far this year and are on pace to recover more firearms this year than they did last year.
Jordan said that’s important because firearms are used in gang-related and narcotics-related crimes.
He said the Oakland Police Department is asking the community to help it by reporting people who illegally possess firearms or replica firearms because it believes the best way to reduce gun violence, and perhaps save the life of someone you know, is to report gun crime before gun violence occurs.
Jordan said people can call (510) 535-GUNS to provide anonymous tips. He said they also can call 911 or (510) 777-3211 for emergencies or (510)777-3333 for non-emergencies.
Jordan said cell phones and electronic devices are the two items that are most commonly taken in street robberies.
He said that in addition to following personal safety guidelines, such as being aware of your surroundings, people should make note of the serial numbers on their electronic devices or install tracking software to help police in recovering such items.
Jordan said many of the recent victims of robberies of cell phones and electronic devices were people who were distracted by talking or texting on their cell phones.
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