WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- Amid heightened concerns over safety in West Hollywood, the City Council voted Monday to hire four additional L.A. County Sheriff's Department deputies.
The vote came in the wake of several incidents in the past month, including an armed robbery that was caught on surveillance video outside a local restaurant. The manager of that restaurant spoke at the City Council meeting Monday evening.
"Seeing my staff crying, coming to work and not being able to feel safe in the city, it makes me responsible to be here in front of you and ask you for help," he said, addressing members of the council.
"We don't need block-by-block ambassadors through the streets to solve crime," he said, referring to the city's security ambassadors program. "We need more police officers going through our streets."
Overnight Monday, a smash-and-grab robbery occurred at the Urbn Leaf cannabis dispensary in the 8400 block of West Sunset Boulevard.
At the front of the store, the break-in left a floor-to-ceiling window shattered. The value of the property that was stolen was not specified.
"I've lived here 40 years, and the city really has never felt this unsafe," resident Steve Martin said in an interview at the City Council chambers on Monday night. "And we've gone through long periods where ... you could walk your dog at midnight. And now, people just feel like they have to stay at home. People feel like prisoners in their own home."
The city's Security Ambassador program is comprised of 85 ambassadors on residential streets and in commercial corridors to deter crime.
Last summer, the City Council voted to cut four Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies from its force and boost the number of security ambassadors, but some residents and business owners said that might not be the solution to tackling crime.