Trinidad Seeks to Battle Crime Wave

An increase in petty thefts has Trinidad looking for solutions to stem the crime wave. The City of Trinidad hosted a Town Hall meeting on May 9 to address the recent rise in crime in the area. The meeting was well-attended by the public. Humboldt County Sheriff Michael Downey and 5th District Supervisor Ryan Sundberg were in attendance.

“There was substantial interest,” said City Manager Karen Suiker. “It was a good chance to get law enforcement face-to-face with citizens and provide some assurance that they are doing the best job they possibly can.”

Trinidad and the Westhaven area have seen an increase in break-ins this year, including homes and vehicles, and piles of broken windshield glass can often be seen at local beaches.

Some positive outcomes came from the meeting, according to Suiker, including a suggestion by Sundberg to create a Facebook page dedicated to local crime.

“It would be sort of like an electronic neighborhood watch,” she said, where citizens could read and report on suspicious activity. A similar page has been started in Fieldbrook.

Suiker was also impressed with the fact that Downey was in attendance despite the manhunt going on in Southern Humboldt for suspected murderer Shane Miller.

“I thought his presence was necessary,” said Suiker. When Downey first indicated he might not make the meeting, Suiker said she considered canceling it. “He didn’t want to cancel the meeting. I thought that was a testament to his commitment.” The meeting ended with citizens and law enforcement agreeing to work together going forward.

“The sheriff is looking for a group of citizens who can work effectively with him,” Suiker said, adding that the meeting was largely to discuss the issue and brainstorm. “There will be meetings in the future, but in a smaller setting.” A sign-up sheet was started for those interested in attending those meetings.

Those interested can reach the City of Trinidad at www.trinidad.ca/gov, and at 677-0223. The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department can be reached at co.humboldt.ca.us/sheriff. Supervisor Sundberg’s phone number is (707) 476-2395.

6 thoughts on “Trinidad Seeks to Battle Crime Wave

    • After Ken Thralkill left, the City closed its own police department and contracted with the Sheriff’s Department for services instead. I was on the Council at that time and reluctantly voted for the change. Why? The biggest reason was that the City’s insurance carrier, PARSAC doersn’t want to cover small-city police departments. Small departments get too many lawsuits. Insurance considerations drive many decisions these days. I hope an active citizen’s group will form to work with Sheriff Downey. He is trying to be receptive to Trinidad/Westhaven concerns and we need to encourage this.

  1. Its worth a word of thanks to the Sheriff for coming by.
    We all need to run these scumballs out of here!

  2. Wow! I grew up in McKinleyville and the crime rate there now is insane! I don’t understand how such a once safe community to live has gotten so ugly. Law enforcement Step Up! Clean up the streets!

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