Walnut Creek council considers funding more police officers amid looting

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. (KRON) — Walnut Creek City Council members are set to consider spending money on more police officers and security equipment.

The idea is the increased law enforcement presence would discourage people from looting the city’s downtown area.

On Wednesday’s agenda, the city will discuss adding five more police officers. They are also talking about spending $215,000 on more security cameras and $35,000 for a security drone.

They’d all be placed in the downtown area, where 80 people ransacked the Nordstrom and left with more than $125,000 in merchandise.

The group injured two employees, pepper sprayed another one, and threatened another employee with a knife, police reported.

If the city council approves these resources — the officers would be hired through June 2023.

They’d also allocate $130,000 for overtime pay for the additional officers, three days a week, through that time.

Last month’s Nordstrom heist happened at Broadway Plaza, where Mayor Kevin Wilk has ordered a street closure to keep thieves from parking getaway cars close to stores. It will be closed at least through the end of 2021.

Adding five more police officers would cost the city about $1.6 million.

The city council would use federal funds from the American Rescue Plan act to hire these officers and buy the security equipment.

The city would still have $2 million left over to use in the future. The meeting convenes at 8:30 a.m.

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