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South Gate : Tip Program Pays Off

The Police Department has arrested four people while acting on tips from workers participating in a new “Community Against Crime” program. The program involves using city workers and mail carriers as the department’s extra eyes and ears.

In March, a man was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving after a tip from a public works employee who noticed the driver knocking down street barricades, Capt. Ron George said. Last week, three people were arrested on suspicion of possession and use of heroin following a tip from a mail carrier, George said.

“This may be the tip of the iceberg,” George said. “This program can really make a difference.”

At least 150 people are participating in the program, including city building inspectors, public works employees and postal workers. The employees meet monthly with police to review a map of the city that shows high crime areas. The map, updated weekly by police, is on public view at the Leland R. Weaver Library on Tweedy Boulevard the first two weeks of the month and at the Hollydale Library on Garfield Avenue for the remainder of the month.

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The program is run by Mike Fiala, a reserve officer with the Police Department. Fiala is a retired Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy who holds a master’s degree in public administration from USC.


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