Posted on May 13, 2020
What has been the response of the Redondo Beach Police Department to the covid-19 pandemic? Chief Keith Kaufman visited with Rotarians today via a weekly Zoom meeting to answer the question. In a word, “pretty good.”
When the pandemic broke two months ago, Chief Kaufman said, “the department was developing contingency plans for other possible emergencies.” Instead it adapted to covid-19.
“Now, everyone who comes into the police department headquarters is disinfected, their temperature is read, they wash their hands, wear a mask, the bottom of their shoes is disinfected, plus we put plastic tarps between working groups,” he said. “We practice social distancing, we wear masks both inside the department and outside in the field, officers don’t take vacations, work long hours, and no one has called in sick.  In fact. we test almost everyone in the department.”
He added that testing can be expensive – up to $75 – but “we’ve got it down to about $5,” he said.
When asked about crime in the city he said, “We are not going to criminalize people, instead we are going to educate them.” He added there has been no increase in incidents of violence in Redondo Beach. But he added, “Criminals have about two weeks to figure things out, and we are nearing two weeks.”
He was less than sanguine about the court system, noting that all courts are closed and that cases have been put off for 90 days. Putting people in jail is doubt full.  “We will not enforce LA County  health orders,” he said.
He said there have been only five cases in which police officers have had to respond directly to individuals with covid-19.
He ended his presentation by noting the California “legislature is in a full attack mode on policing.”