Wednesday , July 24 2024
Support for the police department becomes issue in the fifth ward council race

Support for the police department becomes issue in the fifth ward council race

Embattled San Bernardino City Councilman Ben Reynoso recently posted to his account on X (formerly Twitter) that police union money was coming for his seat.  The fact that he and the San Bernardino Police Officers Association (SBPOA), representing the department’s rank and file officers, do not like each other is not new news.

In 2023, a piece in the IE Community News stated the following:

City of San Bernardino Councilman Ben Reynoso continues to speak out publicly against the police department; meanwhile, his actions contradict his sentiments and open the City up to further civil liability.

In a recent news article, the 5th Ward Council Member stated, “We’re tired of using taxpayer money for police misconduct. It feels like we’re just bleeding dry.”

Reynoso has a history of not supporting the police department, doesn’t prioritize public safety for community members, and did not garner any support from public safety organizations during his campaign.

In fact, when news organizations in the city reached out to candidates asking how they would handle crime in San Bernardino, Reynoso did not respond.

Last year, Reynoso voted against several items related to the equipping of the police department, including voting no on off-road capable vehicles to chase down criminals that run from the police in rugged terrain and night vision for the tactical team.

The President of the SBPOA, Sargeant Jon Plumber, voiced his concerns Tuesday night on the radio, “The same team that was America’s heroes when they responded to the terrorist attack in San Bernardino – those are the same people that Councilman Reynoso voted to deny the vital night-vision resources they were asking for.”

The SBPOA has chosen to endorse Reynoso’s challenger, Kim Knaus stating, “After meticulous evaluation and understanding of the pressing needs of our community, the San Bernardino Police Officers Association (SBPOA) confidently announces its endorsement of Kim Knaus for City Council District 5.

Kim Knaus, Founder and Principal of Intraurban Strategies, has consistently showcased her commitment to elevating safety and the quality of life in San Bernardino. With the city and PD’s focus on combating frequent ranking among the most dangerous in the U.S., her focus on creating safe neighborhoods is timely and crucial.

Her vision encompasses lighting improvements, expanding code enforcement, proactive policing, and strategic collaborations to combat trash and graffiti. Moreover, her balanced and informed approach to addressing the homelessness crisis, prioritizing both compassion and the welfare of taxpayers, is commendable.”

It appears Reynoso has a considerable adversary in Knaus, in a city that has battled high crime rates, (that have recently improved). Making an enemy of the rank-and-file police officers was a poor strategic choice, but his ideology has gotten the better of him.

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