Oakland Chinatown officials welcome increased CHP patrols, but say more help is needed

To many, it's become increasingly clear that tackling crime in Oakland and attacks on Asian Americans is going to take some help.

Carl Chan, with the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, hopes he is witnessing a change in tide.

He told KTVU that he spoke with Mayor Libby Schaaf Wednesday about Governor Gavin Newsom's decision to approve the use of California Highway Patrol officers to assist the Oakland Police Department in patrolling high-crime areas of the city.

"So I think there is a protocol, there will be some procedures as well as how they would be deploying CHP. I know. Work. The important thing is like we have it and they are here and they will be doing the job as well along with the OPD," said Chan.

As part of the plan, CHP would help enforce traffic laws, especially in major commercial corridors & along International Boulevard.

The aim is to free up OPD officers so that they can focus on suppressing crime in the city.

KTVU reached out to Mayor Schaaf’s office to get more information about the plan such as when the collaboration would launch and its cost. We were told that the details are still being ironed out.

Help can’t come soon enough for some in light of new data released Thursday by the organization, Stop AAPI Hate.

"This national report covers the 9,081 incident reports to Stop AAPI Hate from March 19, 2020, to June 30, 2021. The number of hate incidents reported to our center increased from 6,603 to 9,081 during April—June 2021. Of all incident reports, 4,548 hate incidents occurred in 2020 and 4,533 hate incidents occurred in 2021," according to information released by the organization.

"I’m alarmed at the things we’ve seen in Chinatown. The videos that I watch. When Good Samaritans are attempting to step up and they’re being shot it really says that there is a need for greater presence and stronger levels of accountability in the City of Oakland," said OPD Chief LeRonne Armstrong.

Chief Armstrong announced a new crime-fighting strategy Thursday in which he has dipped into the department's overtime funding and is putting desk-duty officers on the streets to make up for a staffing shortage.

"We’re going to ask that they come out a couple (of) hours during their shift and actually support our patrol division, answer calls for service, help identify those who are helping drive crime in our community," Chief Armstrong said.

Chan, with the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, is welcoming assistance, while still casting a wider net for more help to assist the police department to tamp down on crime.

"In addition, I'm also reaching out to the FBI and ATF and the federal for those resources as well," Chan told KTVU.

Chan said he's also reached out to California Attorney General Rob Bonta's office to ask that it provide investigative services to help OPD solve crimes in Oakland.