SANTA CRUZ (KCBS) – Following Tuesday’s deadly police shooting, Santa Cruz residents are in mourning and said they are sick and tired of the violence that has plagued the beach community over the last few years.
Michael Bethke was one of dozens of Santa Cruz residents to stop by police department headquarters on Wednesday, paying his respects to the two officers killed in the line of duty.
As a member of the Chief’s Civilian Advisory Board, Bethke said he knew the officers personally.
“I just can’t believe this happened. That’s all I have to say,” he said.
Sharon Clapman, a member of Take Back Santa Cruz – a grassroots organization aimed at raising awareness about local issues and involving the community, also expressed disbelief in the shooting.
“This is just tragic. I don’t know how an offender can have a registered gun,” said Clapman. “It’s just sick.”
She is referring to 35-year-old Jeremy Goulet, a registered sex offender and the man police said ambushed officers Loran “Butch” Baker and Elizabeth Butler. Clapman said the police department needs to see more support from the community.
“We need support in keeping people in jail that need to stay in jail and people get treatment that need treatment,” she said.
Just last week, the Santa Cruz City Council directed Police Chief Kevin Vogel to hire as many officers as needed to combat a rising crime wave, including sexual assaults, shootings and ongoing gang activity.
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