A community safety statement from West Hollywood City Manager David Wilson, posted Thursday, July 21, 2021, states that for the previous past three weeks, there was a rise in the number of threats received by the City of West Hollywood and its City Councilmembers. According to Wilson, the city is actively working with the City’s Community Safety partners in assessing and maintaining an appropriate level of response.
City Manager Wilson issued the following statement:
“It is the City of West Hollywood’s standard protocol for the City Manager, Community Safety Director, and West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station Captain to discuss, assess, and respond to a rise in threats as they may relate to the safety of members of the City Council, to City Officials such as Advisory Board Members and Commissioners, to staff, and to the public at large.
While there was consideration of additional security to be provided by LASD Deputies, this consideration was never enacted. Instead, under my direction, the City’s Community Safety Department moved forward in addressing additional security needs by assigning Block by Block security ambassadors for City public meetings and events, wherein Councilmembers, City Officials, staff, and members of the public may be in attendance.”
The statement does not make clear if the threats are in relation to the city’s vote during its regular meeting on Monday, June 27, 2022, to approve the City’s FY 2022-23 & 2023-24 two-year operating budget and capital work plan related to community safety.
The item was approved in a 3-2 vote with a motion by Mayor Pro Tempore Sepi Shyne, seconded by Councilmember John D’Amico, with the “yes” vote of Councilmember Lindsey P. Horvath, noting the “no” votes of Mayor Lauren Meister and Councilmember John M. Erickson.
- Increase Block by Block (BBB) security ambassadors by 30 positions to perform foot patrols in residential neighborhoods; staff will return to the City Council with an item for an updated agreement for services in August 2022;
- Add one Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) Deputy assigned to the Entertainment Policing Team beginning July 1, 2022;
- Maintain existing funding levels for LASD Supplemental Patrols for FY2022-23;
- Decrease the number of LASD Deputies by two in 90 days;
- Staff will report back to the City Council on crime trends and to evaluate the BBB staffing increase in nine months (six months after the 90-day period) before a decision is made to potentially decrease by three additional LASD Deputies – if approved, decrease by three additional LASD Deputies; and
- Evaluate decreasing LASD Deputies during Pride and increasing Block by Block (BBB) Security Ambassadors.
The city of West Hollywood takes threats to its employees seriously. On Friday, February 18, 2022, a glass window at City Hall facing Santa Monica Boulevard was shattered by an apparent bullet, shutting down in-person services at City Hall. Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Deputies responded immediately; no one was injured in the incident.