Thank you, Mayor Lewis, shame on Auburn police
June 20, 2012 · Updated 5:32 PM
I am a longtime Auburn resident who has lived adjacent to the Veterans Memorial Park for nearly 30 years. In recent years, the park has regularly been visited by transients who set up camp and sit around barbecue pit fires during the day and adjourn to the wooded areas or next to the stadium to spend the night.
In recent years, our neighborhood has had two home invasion robberies and an assortment of minor offenses during these periods of occupation.
In early May, I noticed that the transients had again returned to the park. I logged an online report with the Auburn Police Department, outlining the problem and received a case number that produced no results. Not only were the visitors still spending the nights in the park, their numbers were increasing.
Two weeks later, I followed up with an email to the police asking for the status of my report and did not receive a response. At the three-week point, I went to the police station and after having to call 911 and having an officer sent to the lobby, I talked with an officer about the problem. He assured me that he would email the officers responsible for patrolling the park.
Still no results.
On June 9, I once again emailed the police and informed them that I had observed no less than six people sleeping next to the stadium the previous night. I again requested that they increase their patrolling. This time, I included Mayor Lewis on the routing.
Within two hours I received an email from the mayor saying that he would look into the issue. The next day the mayor informed me by email that the Auburn police had patrolled the park at 3:30 a.m. on June 10, thus discovering and trespassing seven individuals sleeping under the roof overhang at memorial stadium.
It has become very apparent to me that something is "broken" in the 911 system and the Auburn Police Department. The safety of our citizens homes, persons and public land should be foremost on the agenda. Having to contact the mayor to assure the police address public safety issues is not the way the system is supposed to work.
I thank Pete Lewis for going the extra mile for us and hope Auburn police improve its performance.
– Mike Dean