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Morale at the understaffed Santa Ana Police Department at an all time low

SAPD Police Chief Carlos Rojas

SAPD Police Chief Carlos Rojas

There has been a drop in police officers on the streets in Santa Ana since the last city budget was adopted. Reports from the department are that there are only a handful officers on the street at any given time. If you go to the page 2-78 of the budget, and look under field operations, which are the patrol officers, they have dropped thirty police officer positions – this is the most important division in the department!

On page 2-78 of the adopted budget you can see that there are thirty less officers in patrol now. There were 231 total officers in all ranks the previous and only 198 this year. If you look on page 2-62 you can see the number of authorized officers last year and the number under the new budget.

In 1985, almost 30 years ago, there were 385 authorized police officers (all ranks Chief on down).  Today there are only 316 police officers (add the total of officers, sergeants, lieutenants, captains and the chief) accounted for in the general fund. The population was about 100,000 people less back then.  It has grown tremendously since 1985.

Morale at the SAPD is reportedly so low that police officers are leaving as fast as they can for Anaheim and other agencies.  And to make things worse there are about thirty SAPD police officers who are planning on retiring this year.

Where are the replacement officers going to come from? Nowhere.  No one wants to lateral to the SAPD anymore and they are already short staffed literally beyond belief.

Special Investigations, the department that went after the gang bangers, has been totally eliminated.  Guess who on the City Council was behind that? If you go to page 2-88 in the budget you can see it in print. No one is in that program –  thirty five people eliminated including 29 police officers.

While the residents of this city are mostly unaware as to what is going on at the SAPD, I am told that the actual police officers are complaining daily to anyone who will listen.

All of this has happened since former SAPD Police Chief Paul Walters, who as our City Manager saved our city from bankruptcy, was fired by our City Council and replaced by David Cavazos, who makes more money than President Barack Obama.  Whether or not our current Police Chief, Carlos Rojas, has a plan to get his department out of this mess is a very good question.

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21 Comments  comments 

21 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    I called the police department recently to get a vicious pit bull picked up, and the POLICE OFFICER that showed up told me they have NO ANIMAL CONTROL… I questioned the officer and he tells me the city has no animal control for the entire city. The police officer was unable to capture the vicious dog and simply left the area, talk about public safety??? So you have police officers picking up dogs when they should be fighting crime. Not surprised to have low morale when you have police officers picking up dogs. Chief Rojas what a joke!

  2. Cc

    Looks like ream and Walters took all the city funds, how sad

    • Walters was under contract when he was forced out. The blame falls on the Council.

    • cook

      that’s funny considering the council hand pick guy makes more per year that the both combined you had mentioned. And that was after a 30 plus year careers, not on the first day.

  3. tom

    While the staffing levels are at an all time low, Santa Ana upper management feels the need to place officers downtown and in the civic center area because mouthy little girls from irvine run there mouth and get beat to death. They also cater to the homeless with the “HEART” program taking more officers away from patrol. Rojas does not care and now that he is chief he got what he wanted. I just hope he realizes it can be taken away as fast as he got it. So much for an open employment process for chief huh Rojas? Feel proud about that? Maybe there should be a complete renovation of the city counsil members so the emphasis goes back to the Citizens not the immigrants.

  4. Anonymous

    When is the city going to WAKE UP???!!

    Economics 101; if you fail to have thriving businesses in the city, then how are you able to gain revenue to pay for police and other services???

    The city of Santa Ana is the WORST city in Orange County to do business. Unless your trying to open up a taco truck, transient shelter (every street corner) or a marijuana dispensary….good luck.

    Ask ANY business that is trying to expand or open up a small or commercial size company……nightmare. The city of Santa Ana does everything it can to slow or stop you from improving the city.

    I have been a resident for more years than I can count; home owner and business owner. The city council wants this city to remain poor….it lacks vision and basic leadership! Nothing has changed with the new city manager. Everyone is too busy thanking each other for being an all Latino city council… one cares pendejos….accept you and your blind followers.

    Best way to describe the city and the people who run it; clueless, incompetent and arrogant. Take a moment and watch the city council meetings. Educate your self….talk to some of the small non corporate businesses. Ask them what they think about the city government.

    Be safe SAPD…

    God bless the Santa Ana Police and the United States of America!

  5. Cc

    Awesome remark , I’m glad some one sees my point a view…city is a train wreck…

  6. I do not understand the complaints here!

    I have ran for the city council in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008 so the people had a choose.

    Now people got what they chosen.

    Next time put your shit where it belongs.

    • Jedi Roundtable

      Maybe you didn’t get elected because of your poor grammar and lack of education. Lets break this down as someone who could be your campaign manager;

      “I do not understand the complaints here!” – Good sentence, but I would explain to your readers as to why you don’t understand.

      “I have ran for the city council in 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008 so the people had a choose.” – Again, there is no grammar check so you have to actually know how to speak. I would have said; “I’ve ran for a position on the city council in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008; so it’s the people’s choice.” or “…so the voters choose.” You can’t use ‘people’ because that would indicate that everyone in Santa Ana can vote, when in actuality it’s only about 10% who can legally vote.

      “Now the people got what they chosen.” – I understand what you’re saying, but lets place the focus back on grammar. It should be something like “Now the people get what they voted for.”

      “Next time put your $hit where it belongs.” – I don’t understand? What $#!t are you referring to or where one would put it.

      I think if people actually voted for you in a council campaign, they were only friends and family because any normal person who can speak properly would not be able to understand what your 5th grade education has to offer.

      • Dear Jedi,

        It is my comment and my art not yours. If you do not like my writing stile do not read it.

        Obviously you are valuing the intellect over intelligence which makes you an intellectual moron mongoloid.

        [“Next time put your $hit where it belongs.” – I don’t understand? What $#!t are you referring to or where one would put it.]………. Hmmmmmmm

        Do you see what I mean?……… no IQ!

        Hint: Normally you should not carry your shit in the cranial cavity.


    Please keep the brave men and women of the Santa Ana Police Department in your thoughts and prayers and think twice when voting for the elected officials. SAPD has the ability to be great again and I hope that things improve soon. I have a friend there who has worked for two and a half decades and while he is concerned, he is optimistic that the Chief will recognize the concerns of its citizens and hard working employees who are carrying a tremendous work load.

  8. Cc

    Our current mayor already took a great fire department away from Santa Ana I hope the police department doesn’t get that treatment

  9. Pedroza, your robot ID does not work. It gave me an error and I lost my comment.

    Now I have to start all over again.

  10. Anonymous

    What a bunch of IDIOTS! I am glad I don’t live in Santa Ana!

  11. Guadalupe

    The council has to save money for the multi-million street car to nowhere!!!

  12. Driving that train, high on cocaine
    Miguel, you better watch your speed
    Trouble ahead, trouble behind
    And you know that notion just crossed my mind

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