What do San Leandro residents want in 2013?
When Patch posed this question on its Facebook page, the most consistent wish was some variation of less crime.
Granting that wish may depend on what happens with Oakland's effort to quell its own crime wave by hiring a $125,000 consultant -- former New York and Los Angeles police chief William J. Bratton (pictured above).
Bratton is credited with curbing crime in New York and Los Angeles by cracking down on so-called "petty crime" -- broken windows, graffiti, and similar acts that display, and perhaps encourage, a disrespect toward the law that breeds more serious acts, according to Wikipedia.
How this relates to San Leandro is suggested by an analysis of one year of arrests by San Leandro Police. The analysis was done by school board member Mike Katz-Lacabe and published on his blog, San Leandro Bytes.
According to his analysis of police data, Oakland residents accounted for almost a third of all the arrests made in San Leandro. That compared to just under 38 percent of arrestees who came from San Leandro. In this place was Hayward which contributed just under 8 percent of arrestees.
Before the November election Congresswoman Barbara Lee made a campaign appearance at Zocalo Coffeehouse in the Broadmoor neighborhood that borders Oakland.
After her remarks, a young father introduced himself as a San Leandro native who went to Arroyo High before serving in the Army in Iraq and returning here with his wife and their child.
He loved his house and neighborhood, he said. But he didn't like sitting in his yard at night hearing the gunshots from over the border.
There are no easy answers. And all of this creates the potential for narrow-minded reactions. But San Leandro's hopes seem to rest to some extent on crime-fighting initiatives to the north. Good luck Oakland!