Barstow announces new policing programs to prepare for ‘enormous population growth’

Published on

Barstow police chief announces new policing programs to prepare for ‘enormous population growth’
Photo credit: Facebook.com/barstow.detectives

BARSTOW – Barstow Police Chief Andy Espinoza announced, Tuesday, various programs and tactics to address crime. These measures are in preparation for an economic development surge from BNSF Railway’s $1.5 billion plans.

“We have made great strides in addressing criminal activity in our city, and the results are already showing with property crimes trending much lower,” said Espinoza. “As our city will go through a major change with the BNSF project and enormous population growth, we will be steadfast in ensuring the safety of our residents.”

BNSF Railway plans to invest more than $1.5 billion to construct a master-planned rail facility in Barstow. When completed, the city expects it will double in size from 25,000 residents to 50,000.

The key change to Barstow policing is going towards “more of a strategic-focused, data-driven, evidence-based policing,” said Espinoza. 

More police officers are now assigned to specific beats and different areas of the city. 

This helps the officers develop stronger relationships and community ties, rather than being sent to calls throughout the entire city.

RELATED: BNSF $1.5B facility will bring ‘thousands of jobs to Barstow’

“We started being more proactive and addressing hot spots and locations where crime was happening, and the same officers are addressing them and conducting the follow up,” said Espinoza. “We made it a priority to staff a specialized Crime Impact Team, putting cops in the right areas to help prevent crime.”

In addition to the Crime Impact Team, other measures include:

  • Automated license plate readers on busy streets to help find suspects and solve crimes.
  • A part-time Homeless Outreach Proactive Enforcement (HOPE) team that allows officers to be proactive with the homeless.
  • A Chief Advisory Board that allows input from community members, including educators, social workers, business owners and former police officers to be provided to the chief.
  • “Coffee with a Cop” is held every quarter, and “Tacos with a Cop” takes place at different times throughout the year which strengthens relationships with residents.
  • Officers working with Barstow youth by taking part in industry youth coaching at the high school. 
  • The Police Activity League (PAL) raises funds for toys to deliver to children on Christmas Eve each year. 

Espinoza said other programs are in the works, including the development of a Community Action Team to work in community relations and target different apartment complexes in the city. The goal would be to generate a crime-free multi-housing division and certify the units.

spot_img

Latest articles

SB County Museum awarding $100 gift cards to complete survey

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY – San Bernardino County Museum wants the community to provide input on future programming provided to the community.

WISH grant provides first time homebuyers up to $22,000 for downpayment

STATEWIDE – The Workforce Initiative Subsidy for Homeownership (WISH) program can help aspiring homeowners overcome some of the biggest barriers to achieving their dream and building wealth – downpayment and closing costs.

Skanska to rebuild N. 1st Avenue Bridge in Barstow for $30 Million

BARSTOW – Skanska, a Sweden-based development and construction group, announced their contract with the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority to rebuild the N. 1st Avenue Bridge over the BNSF railyard.

SB County Probation Department recognized for improving youth quality of life

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY – Therapy, education, and training are the services provided for youth in San Bernardino County Probation Department’s ARISE program.

More like this

Skanska to rebuild N. 1st Avenue Bridge in Barstow for $30 Million

BARSTOW – Skanska, a Sweden-based development and construction group, announced their contract with the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority to rebuild the N. 1st Avenue Bridge over the BNSF railyard.

SB County Probation Department recognized for improving youth quality of life

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY – Therapy, education, and training are the services provided for youth in San Bernardino County Probation Department’s ARISE program.

Hesperia Days now accepting entries for fairy tale themed parade

HESPERIA – The Rock’n Our Disabilities Foundation is now accepting entries for the 2023 Hesperia Days Parade.