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Captain Robert Haley, head of the Encinitas sheriff’s station, held a “Coffee with the Captain” public meeting on December 9. The 8 a.m. session was held at the Chick-fil-A across the street from the sheriff’s office.

Capt. Haley reported that in 2011 and 2012, crime had been on the increase in the coastal areas covered by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department — Del Mar, Solana Beach, and Encinitas. There were 1207 reported crimes last year, including everything from car break-ins to violent crimes.

However, due to the activation of a “crime-suppression unit,” crime is down 18 percent for 2013. The unit is an undercover operation that has been focusing on burglary, robbery, and auto thefts. The captain said that most crimes against property, such as residential and car break-ins, are committed by people from outside the community.

Sheriff’s detectives recently tracked a bad guy to his Santee residence and found a lot of stolen property from Encinitas.

The captain also indicated that the rate of violent crime in Encinitas is extremely low. “We are known throughout the state for our low crime rate,” he said.

Sheriff’s Sgt. Wallace reported that gang membership in Encinitas was “static,” as in, not growing. There seem to be few conflicts with what could be rival gangs from Solana Beach and Oceanside. The sergeant indicated the department knows who the gang members are and what they are up to.

One of the attendees, Dana Roberts, said the low attendance at the meeting means folks are generally happy with their police department. Other community members in attendance just wanted to offer their thanks to the deputies.

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