Oakland community leaders demand Newsom declare state of emergency over violent crime

Oakland community leaders on Tuesday called on Gov. Gavin Newsom to declare a state of emergency to help quell an ongoing spree of violent crime in Chinatown and across the city.

They're also want the governor to bring in more law enforcement to assist.

"Governor Newsom we want you to do this— declare a state of emergency for the city of Oakland," said Carl Chan, president of the Oakland Chinese Chamber of Commerce.

Chan said crime in Chinatown and across the city is out of control. He said the governor needs to send more law enforcement to Oakland to curb the violence.

"We want you to bring in the California Highway Patrol," Chan said. "I'm not only asking you to patrol Chinatown, all areas. We need your help."

There was no immediate response Tuesday from Newsom's office or the CHP.

At a news conference at the Pacific Renaissance Plaza in the heart of Chinatown, Chan, flanked by members of the so-called "blue angels", a citizen patrol group, read part of a letter he wrote to the governor.

Chan has held several news conferences at the plaza that have included Mayor Libby Schaaf and top officials with the Alameda County District Attorney's Office, and FBI.

This latest news conference came after a man was shot and wounded while trying to stop robbers targeting two women at 8th and Franklin streets on Saturday afternoon.

The good Samaritan, who wanted to be identified only as Mr. Li, told KTVU he knew he had to help.

"I really wanted to draw attention away from them, maybe give a distraction, saying your presence is known, that you’re committing a crime," Li said.

Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong said commended Li for his efforts to assist, "but I think it’s important that they observe and report, that they provide that information to the police department, so we can respond and handle the situation."

Armstrong said he's boosted police presence in Chinatown in response to community concerns.

"There is fear. There is pain that needs to be addressed," said City Councilmember Loren Taylor. He added that he's not yet ready to commit to CHP resources but agreed that more needs to be done. 

"Our community was under attack. And I say our community,  because we are one Oakland," Taylor said. "When one of us is attacked, all of us are attacked."