LA Sheriff’s Dept response times longer in unincorporated areas – audit

John North and Christina Salvo (KABC) | January 29, 2013

LOS ANGELES — A newly released audit says some parts of Los Angeles County get consistently better response times from the sheriff’s department than others. Members of the board of supervisors want to know why.

Last week, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors demanded an explanation from Sheriff Lee Baca on his decision to reduce patrols in those areas. They launched the audit and review, which looked at 23 cities and found that when it came to patrolling those areas, deputies only provided 91 percent of the planned patrol hours. But in cities that contract the department’s services, patrolling was at 99 percent.

The sheriff’s department says it was only able to patrol the streets of Carson, one of the cities examined in the audit, at a rate of 85 percent of the time compared to its target goal of 98 percent because it had to reduce staff due to budget cuts.

The audit also found that the cost of patrolling services in unincorporated areas was $44.8 million less than what the sheriff’s department estimated.

“It’s not just about being upset. It’s about being shortchanged with justification,” said Supervisor Gloria Molina. “Those residents are entitled to the same amount of services, they pay the same taxes.”

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Photo credit: Francine Orr/Los Angeles Times

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