ENCINITAS — Residents now have a personal tool to help combat drugs and gangs in the area, as the Encinitas Sheriff’s station announced the launch of a new narcotic and gang tip line.
The tip line routes calls directly to deputies assigned to those specialty investigative units.
The tip line was instituted after residents voiced concerns during a series of neighborhood meetings held in Encinitas and the other coastal communities of Del Mar, Solana Beach and nearby unincorporated areas.
“We’ve identified a need in the community (for the tip line),” said Lt. Kelly Martinez, of the Encinitas Sheriff’s Station.
She added that the station has not particularly seen a spike in drug or gang activity, but the phone number is one way for deputies to be more responsive when drug or gang activity is spotted.
If a resident sees a problem related to narcotic or gang activity in their neighborhood, they can call (760) 966-3518. All calls are anonymous.
Citizens can also leave their contact information, in which case a deputy would contact them.
“We thought that if they could call and talk directly to one of our officers, that would be better,” Martinez said.
The station also works closely with Crime Stoppers, at (888) 580-8477 and the Internet-based We Tip, where residents can leave online tip information on the site wetip.com.
There have been at least about three neighborhood meetings each month, Martinez said.
She said that residents in neighborhoods have frequently asked for the meetings with deputies. Other times, the station requests meetings with the public to talk about problems and hear ideas.
“Sometimes a neighborhood will call and say they’re having an issue, and we suggest the neighborhood get together,” she said.
If a meeting is desired, she said the public could call the Encinitas Sheriff’s Station at (760) 966-3500 and ask to speak with a crime prevention specialist.
The meetings are typically held in locations such as residents’ homes, community centers, schools, and parks or occasionally at the station, Martinez said.