On October 19th, The City of Vallejo was served with a Writ of Mandate by the Vallejo Police Officers Association (VPOA) in an attempt to invalidate and block the Proclamation of a Public Safety Emergency in the City of Vallejo. The VPOA has requested that the courts grant a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) on the City’s ability to Proclaim a Public Safety Emergency. The City intends to respond to the attempt to obstruct the Proclamation of a Public Safety Emergency and City attorneys will appear in court on Wednesday for an oral argument against the TRO.
The Public Safety Emergency was proclaimed because the City of Vallejo is currently facing multiple crises that require swift action. This year the City is on track for having one of the deadliest and most crime-ridden years on record since 1994. In addition to the elevated crime, the community’s confidence and trust in the Vallejo Police Department’s legitimacy has severely diminished. Over the last several decades, numerous officer-involved-shootings have generated use-of-force concerns. Additionally, internal scandals have fostered a clear and evident distrust and skepticism amongst Community members towards the VPD.
The City also faces significant threats to its fiscal sustainability due to pending claims and litigation related to police actions. There are currently 24 federal civil rights cases pending in the courts and an additional 13 government tort claims arising from police conduct. With liability insurance providers substantially increasing premiums and deductibles for agencies across the State of California, Vallejo cannot afford additional cost increases, especially during this pandemic-induced recession.
The Proclamation will allow the City to address these issues quickly, through course correction, rather than through costly damage control.
To read more about what the Proclamation does and does not allow the City to do, click here.