Need More Cops

On April 15, at approximately 8:40 p.m., an SDPD van and patrol car arrived at the CVS pharmacy located on Garnet Avenue. As I approached the three officers standing in the parking lot outside the store, I overheard one of them say to the parking-lot security guard, “We’re the only three in the city. The City laid everybody else off.” I snapped a few photos, introduced myself, and mentioned that I’d overheard his comment about their being the only three officers on duty in the city.

“It just feels that way,” he said, “we’re just really, really busy.” Then the officers returned to their vehicles and headed west on Garnet Street in a hurried manner.

In speaking with the parking-lot security guard, I learned that the incident that had brought the three officers to the pharmacy involved a drunken homeless man who was reported to have entered the pharmacy and pushed a shopper to the ground. The man took off before police had arrived. The security guard stated that he had headed in a westerly direction. The perpetrator was identified as a 40- to 45-year-old male with long brown hair who was wearing a red sweatshirt and jeans.

On my way inside the pharmacy to interview the store manager, I encountered two seemingly homeless people who had set up camp on the sidewalk just outside the store entranceway: an elderly female in a wheelchair and a 5’6” man in his late 50s. As I walked past them, the homeless man rushed toward me, and with his face just inches from mine, he yelled three times in rapid succession, “I’m an ex Navy SEAL!”

The manager of CVS was unavailable for comment.

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The owner of this property needs to get this parking lot under control. This is another example of a property owner probably renting for top dollar and not protecting the tenants. There are over-sized vehicles living in it!

I wonder what would happen if there were less shoppers at these stores. After all, there are other places to shop.

The manager of the CVS is the first line of defense on this sort of thing. It is his/her store that suffers from that sort of misbehavior. At my current location, I have plenty of pharmacies/drugstores to choose from, including about four CVS. Which one do I patronize? The one that offers the least stress and delay. If I had homeless people in my face, I'd make sure to go elsewhere. If the center management or ownership won't provide adequate security, the store should get its own and keep its entrances clear. But note that there WAS a security guard--he wasn't stopping the campers from setting up next to the door.

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