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Tijuana Restructures Police Force

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

The latest crime wave in Tijuana has prompted the city to completely reorganize its police force. Tijuana’s Director of Public Security announced the changes Thursday. KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has details.

Public Security Director Javier Algorri says until safety is restored to Tijuana, agents will work 12 hour shifts and will not be able to take vacation. Algorri says his force of approximately 1,200 officers will be reassigned to focus on street patrols. They’ll set up checkpoints all over the city. And they’ll patrol in groups of five so they are not outmanned when they respond to calls involving organized crime. Algorri says Tijuana is in a state of emergency. 

He hopes this overhaul restores tranquility and security to the city. The recent crime wave comes on the heels of the arrest of suspected drug cartel leader Francisco Javier Arellano-Felix. He’s being held in a San Diego jail.  Five police agents, including the assistant chief, have been killed in recent weeks. Amy Isackson, KPBS News.

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