Santa Monica property owners post sign in shopping area saying city ‘is not safe’ due to crime, homelessness
Some Santa Monica property owner posted a sign saying that the city of Santa Monica was “not safe” due to homelessness and crime.
“We’ve had enough,” Jessica Rogers, a member of the Santa Monica Coalition, told KTTV-TV about the sign which is displayed on Santa Monica’s famed Third Street Promenade and reads, “Santa Monica is not safe. Crime, depravity, outdoor mental asylum. “
“We are using free speech to raise awareness and inform people that Santa Monica is real,” Rogers said.
Rising crime has been a consistent issue in Los Angeles County in recent years, and while Santa Monica Police figures show that “serious crimes” are holding steady in the upscale beach city, “Part 2” crimes that include simple assault, vandalism and narcotics were up 8% in the first 6 months of this year, according to a report from Santa Monica Daily Press.
Santa Monica Coalition posted a sign at the Third Street Promenade warning shoppers that the city is not safe.
A study released by SafeWise earlier this year ranked Santa Monica as one of the least safe cities in California. The city, home of several high-profile celebrities and tourist attractions like the iconic Santa Monica Pier, placed 224 out of 230 in the ranking.
In April, the United States Postal Service temporarily suspended service to a Santa Monica neighborhood not far from where the sign was posted after several attacks on postal workers.
3rd Street Promenade Santa Monica, CA
(Photo by Morgan Lieberman/Getty Images)
“Day and night, the promenade has turned into a mental asylum,” John Alle, also with the Santa Monica Coalition, said about the crime and homelessness on the promenade. “Very sick people need to be institutionalized and receive medical attention. It’s very sad. There are sex workers in this area. There’s drug dealing in the open, 8, 9 a.m. in the morning, 10, 11 p.m. at night. We have four to five people dying a month in the alleys from overdoses of fentanyl. Not everyone was happy with the gesture, including Andrew Thomas, CEO, Downtown Santa Monica, Inc., which stated that the sign was counterproductive.
A homeless man lies in Tongva Park on Santa Monica’s six-acre property. This is a new urban community in Santa Monica, California. It features interesting architecture, walkways and landscaping and is located between City Hall and Santa Monica Pier.
(Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)
“Putting up signage like that I find to be very harmful to our business community, to our reputation, and really runs counter to the experience that thousands and thousands of people are having when they come visit our downtown every single day,” Thomas said.
The city of Santa Monica also expressed frustration with the sign in a statement outlining the work the city has done to combat crime and homelessness including adding more security officers.
“We care deeply about the success of Santa Monica businesses. It is sad that a small group landlords are trying to hinder our collective success by putting up signs at the same time small businesses are welcoming holiday shoppers,” the statement stated.
The Santa Monica Police Department, which is facing a record shortage of officers due primarily to a surge in retirements and lack of recruits, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News Digital.
Homeless encampments are a common sighting in Santa Monica especially along the beach in the area known as “No Man’s Land” between Santa Monica and neighboring Venice Beach where authorities have recently attempted to clear out the encampments.
Andrew Mark Miller is a Fox News writer. Find him on Twitter @andymarkmiller and email tips to AndrewMark.Miller@Fox.com.
I have been writing professionally for over 20 years and have a deep understanding of the psychological and emotional elements that affect people. I’m an experienced ghostwriter and editor, as well as an award-winning author of five novels.