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Threatened Hemet police to battle attackers

April 13, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
The city of Hemet says its police department is under attack, and enough is enough. A gang task force building was set to blow up. A booby trap was set to kill police officers. A pipe bomb was rigged to a patrol car, and several city vehicles were set ablaze.

Tuesday, the city council passed a resolution to make it easier for the police department to fight back against whoever is behind these attacks.

"We're having things happen almost every couple of days, so by doing this, it will help in apprehending the person that's doing this to our police department," said Hemet Vice Mayor Jerry Franchville.

The resolution passed by the council will allow the police department to spend tax dollars to make security improvements, without having to go through the standard two-month bidding process. Franchville believes it's a good idea.

"Well, the main goal is to keep the officers safe and secure in our city. We can't have a member of the public out there harming police officers. They're a danger to the rest of society as well," said Franchville.

There's been some thought that these attacks are the work of a local gang, but Franchville says he's not so sure about that.

"It's not organized enough to belong to a gang. I believe it's an individual, or 2 or 3 who are doing it," Franchville speculated.

While some may be concerned about giving this kind of financial power to the police department, most residents seem to be in favor of the move.

"Let's nip it in the bud. Let's get it done, and let's get back to living our lives in Hemet like we always have. We've all said Hemet is heaven. We want to get back to it," said Hemet resident Tami Wilhelm.


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