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BPD working to engage local hotel and motel industry through 'Hotel Watch' group

Posted at 5:56 PM, Apr 29, 2024

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The Bakersfield Police Department is taking the concept of the neighborhood watch and bringing together those in the industry to discuss solutions to their mutual problems.

  • Crime prevention through environmental design is just one of the services Zamora and BPD are sharing with local businesses during their quarterly hotel watch meetings, a gathering of local hotel and motel workers and owners to discuss the biggest issues facing their industry.
  • The hotel watch meetings take place every three months. The next meeting is scheduled for July 25 at 10 a.m. at 1601 Truxtun Ave. The meeting is not open to the public, only for industry workers and groups.

The top struggles facing local hotel and motel owners isn’t financial or competition, it’s actually something we’re seeing throughout the state: security and crime. That’s why the Bakersfield Police Department is taking the concept of the neighborhood watch and bringing together those in the industry to discuss solutions to their mutual problems.

“If you look at the windows that are facing Union, I do see that they have a little bit of bushes but they’re not covering their windows," said Bakersfield Police Community Relations Specialist Didi Zamora, breaking down positive environmental security designs of the Capri Motel on Union Avenue. “Which is great, you don’t want any bushes or landscaping to cover any natural surveillance."

Crime prevention through environmental design is just one of the services Zamora and BPD are sharing with local businesses during their quarterly hotel watch meetings, a gathering of local hotel and motel workers and owners to discuss the biggest issues facing their industry.

“A lot of the issues that we hear are transient-related issues, whether it’s coming in and out of their hotel/motels, using any outlets or anything they have outside their hotel and motel buildings," Zamora said.

Along with services, the meetings include higher ups from Code Enforcement and BPDs Impact Unit.

Lieutenant Nicole Anderberg said especially for this industry, not only is reporting instances of trespassing and loitering important but making sure business owners have taken the steps to help streamline law enforcement’s ability to intervene.

“A no trespass sign on your business or on your private property is definitely helpful, we also have a process where you can have a nor trespass letter on file," Anderberg said. "So our officers can quickly find your information if you have a problem with people loitering on your property and refusing to leave."

“Maybe its getting a restraining order against the person coming out onto their buildings, or maybe if its they’re wanting to press charges and helping detectives build cases against them," Zamora said.

Like a neighborhood watch model, the meetings not only connect those in the industry to law enforcement officials — but to others facing similar challenges. Zamora hopes to get more involvement from local motels and hotels in order to find mutual solutions, especially for smaller chains and local businesses that may be at a higher risk.

“We can’t be everywhere so it’s really nice to have meetings like this and hear directly from the community what issues they’re facing," she said. “Maybe the funds aren’t there for round the clock security and it might appeal to smaller businesses and owners but we welcome everybody..”

The hotel watch meetings take place every three months. The next meeting is scheduled for July 25 at 10 a.m. at 1601 Truxtun Ave. The meeting is not open to the public, only for industry workers and groups.


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