CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

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Wednesday, March 9, 2005

San Francisco Mayor Proposes Firetrucks on Corners to Deter Crime

On Monday, at a City Hall meeting with police and fire chiefs, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom suggested that parking fire trucks, manned with firefighters who aren't responding to emergency calls, on street corners of crime-prone areas could be a viable crime deterrent for the city to explore.  Mayor Newsom's idea comes in response to an increased crime rate in San Francisco.  The city has 19 reported homicides so far in 2005, whereas at this time last year, there were only 13, and Mayor Newsom wants to take more action to reduce these violent crimes.  SFGate.com reports:  "(Mayor Newsom said), 'I think the homicide rate is outrageous. This is my biggest burden.'  He said the city needs to look beyond traditional policing and consider creative tactics, such as putting fire trucks on the streets. There already are plans in the works to park city ambulances in outlying neighborhoods later this year so they can respond to calls faster."  Firefighters union chief John Hanley agreed that the visible presence of fire trucks on corners may prevent some crime, but raised safety concerns.   "We're firefighters. We're not armed. My guys don't have bulletproof vests,'' Hanley said. More from the San Francisco Chronicle... [Mark Godsey]

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