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Manhattan Beach Police: We Are Doing 'Everything Possible' To Mitigate Crime

Jul 06, 2022 11:26PM ● By Jeanne Fratello

Pasha Fine Jewelry in downtown Manhattan Beach remained boarded up last week with police presence outside

Following the dramatic robbery at Pasha Fine Jewelry in downtown Manhattan Beach last month, the Manhattan Beach Police assured City Council members and residents that they were doing everything possible to prevent future attacks.

The Pasha robbery was "traumatic" for Manhattan Beach residents, businesses, and for the police as well, Acting MBPD Police Chief Derrick Abell told the City Council on Tuesday night.

"Our officers take this very seriously, and more importantly, they are very passionate about what they do," said Abell. "Anytime someone comes into our community and commits a crime, our people take it personally. We do everything in our power to not only try to mitigate that, but to bring those individuals to justice."

As for the investigation on the Pasha robbery, MBPD Captain Christian Eichenlaub said, "We can’t talk about it other than to say we are pursuing every avenue and every lead, working tirelessly to bring these perpetrators to justice."

In a statement following the robbery last month, the police department announced that it would remain "steadfast" with regular patrols throughout town, including business and residential areas, and would  increase foot patrols throughout the downtown area.

Overall, said Eichenlaub, property crimes are up in certain areas, but there has not been an increase in violent crimes.

"Our cops are taking guns off the street, and they’re taking the people that need to be taken to jail, to jail," said Eichenlaub, who added, "We’re lucky to have a supportive community that’s engaged and cares about what’s happening."

Eichenlaub reminded residents to call the police non-emergency number at 310-545-4566 if they see something that seems "off." "Don’t feel hesitant, if something doesn’t look right, to call us. Our response time is second to none," he said.

MBPD Captain Andy Harrod confirmed that District Attorney George Gascon's office has discontinued its policy of prohibiting prosecutors for seeking cash bail for non-violent crimes, a policy that critics had referred to as the "get out of jail free" program.

Harrod confirmed that the MBPD is now "imposing a bail schedule on all of our misdemeanor and felony crimes, as well as infractions."

Police Hiring Continues

Manhattan Beach Human Resources Director Lisa Jenkins told councilmembers that the police department is currently down four positions, possibly soon to be five; and yet the training and hiring process is always in motion.

"We are constantly putting individuals into the process both as trainees and lateral experienced officers," she said.

Furthermore, she noted, Manhattan Beach had hired 12 new police officers in the just-ended fiscal year (with eight of those being trained "laterals" that have been hired from other police agencies). Additionally, the City Council has also authorized MBPD to hire two additional police officers over and above its normally budgeted positions.

Abell said that the "lateral" hires from other departments work to MBPD's advantage because the department can put them right on the street and not have to put them through the academy.

These lateral officers have been coming to Manhattan Beach because they have been speaking to Manhattan Beach's own officers, who have "been doing a great job recruiting," he said. "The door is continuing to stay open and we are getting the best of the best."

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