Antioch needs more protection

Dear Editor:

The city of Antioch, along with the Antioch Police Department and local business owners, need to provide more protection for our streets. Police were unaware that there was a late-night adult skate party at Paradise Skate on a Saturday night, which they should have been as a cautionary. Because of the lack of security, a fight broke out which led to a homicide. Had the skating rink hired security and thoroughly searched each individual as he or she entered the building, this all could have been prevented.

On the Saturday night of the shooting, I was at the Antioch skating rink enjoying my godbrother's 30th birthday. The crowd I was with was between the ages of 25-40; however, this was an 18 and over event. Alcohol was served but no one at the reception area checked your ID to give 21 and older wristbands. There were over 100 people in the rink, and in the midst of skating and having a good time, a fight broke out and a guy pulled out a gun. Of course everyone started scattering and panicking. When the coast was clear, or so they thought, some people ran outside trying to get into their cars and go home, and that is when one of the guys involved in the fight decided to shoot out into a crowd of people, killing an innocent young mother.

Another thing that would helped with the safety of the Antioch community would be to offer up a better system for witness protection. Usually when a witness does take the time to come forward, he or she has to give a statement. The police usually come to your house, and eventually you are put on the stand in front of your accuser and asked to relive what you saw.

I think the police would get more out of people coming forward if the changed the way they did that. People would feel like their life was in jeopardy for coming forward. After one would testify and the world knows who you are, then the accuser's people will now hunt you down and possibly kill you for testifying.

Doing something about putting more police presence will definitely help to solve some of the crimes that are going on in the Antioch community. Families moved out here because it is cheaper to buy or rent a house, and when you get people from Richmond, Oakland and San Francisco coming to one city, it brings chaos. There are a lot of families with children that come out here to get a better life for their families, and want to feel safe.

Kiana Mathews

Antioch

Metering lights are bad idea

Dear Editor:

Behold the irrefutable (in their minds) logic of the bureaucrats who never look beyond the moment and have no idea of the concept of unintended consequences. This not so brilliant idea, that they now seek to impose on East County and Highway 4, is being thrust upon us without regard to our wishes. This brainstorm, of course, is metering lights!

In the minds of the bureaucrats of Caltrans, metering lights are the answer to congested highways. And, of course, sometimes it works for a limited time, but mostly it creates tremendous unintended consequences; i.e.: massive backups on city streets. To the bureaucrats this is not their problem because traffic is flowing on the highway for which they are responsible. City traffic jams are someone else's problem.

So with a tip of the hard hat, they drive off to impose half-planned solutions on other communities.

Jerry Brown was right in his first term as governor in the 1970s. He shutdown Caltrans as a seriously problematic government hodge-podge and planned to contract with the private sector to maintain and build the highways of California. This, plan, would have saved huge amounts of, heretofore wasted, taxpayer money and achieve the highways for which California was famous.

Unfortunately, Democrat politicians who are dependent on government bureaucrat's bribery, such as campaign contributions, scotched the one good idea Jerry ever had and reinstituted the organization that gave us the way over budget and schedule Bay Bridge replacement and a rash of impractical and worthless plans to squeeze eight lanes of highway traffic into two or three. However, we can't lay all the blame for this on Caltrans. They are working at the behest of Democrat politicians who are spending what should be allocated to highways on brainless and purposeless social programs in a futile attempt to bring Nirvana to California; whether we want it or not.

Good luck out there fellow citizens -- you are going to need it!

Ernest Hampson

Pittsburg

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