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Bryant / Vanalden, the Police and the INS

October 01, 1985

Iam writing to clarify statements attributed to me in your Aug. 28 article concerning the police seeking Immigration and Naturalization Service raids in the Bryant/Vanalden area of Northridge.

Readers have expressed confusion and concern to me that the department is asking INS to conduct blanket raids in this community. This is not the case, and I doubt that INS would even consider such action.

It is important that the reader realize that, because of crime and traffic problems at this location, and the numerous related complaints received from members of the community, this area demands a disproportionately high percentage of police service. The area has in fact taxed Devonshire Division's ability to adequately provide service to the rest of the community at large. The reader should also be informed that Devonshire Division in particular and the department in general are understaffed. Because of this, it is necessary to look at all available resources to make this a better place to live.

It is in this vein that INS will be looked at as a resource agency capable of tracking high-grade misdemeanor and felony arrestees to ensure they are reviewed for deportation after processing through the criminal justice system. Additionally, INS will be asked to examine other law violators within their enforcement policy.

Devonshire Area is trying to come to grips with the policing needs of the community. It is felt that, by involving other agencies such as the Los Angeles County Health Department, the city of Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety and the Federal INS, we will be more successful.

MARK D. STEVENS

Los Angeles

Stevens is the captain of the Los Angeles Police Department's Devonshire Division.

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