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By Chris Frost
Oxnard-- During council comments at the April 5 Oxnard City Council meeting, Gabriela Basua said she's been receiving emails and phone calls from people in the Cypress Neighborhood, and they are concerned about the criminal activity that happened last weekend.
The Oxnard Police Department responded to the 600 block of Howell Road, April 4, where a man was shot and killed.
"We can all understand and sympathize with the fear within that neighborhood," Basua said. "One of the challenges we have is our police department, we all recall, we had budget cuts. I am asking my fellow council members that as we go into next year's budget, that we restore the services at the police department and add additional resources to the department that is needed because part of us feeling safe is having a police department that has the resources, personnel, and our support to go out into our community and make a presence there. Now the Cypress neighborhood is asking for some of those resources. I spoke to Chief Benitez today, and he is doing everything in his power that he can in order to support the neighborhoods. Not only in Cypress but everywhere else. I hope that I will have the support of my fellow council members as we go into next year's budget."
Councilman Gabe Tehran offered his condolences to the families affected by the violence in the Cypress neighborhood.
"It's indicative of larger social issues that are happening, and I am hoping we can all work together to support the community and find solutions that can be addressed," he said.
Councilman Bert Perello said if you see something, say something.
"I had the opportunity to meet with Mayor Zaragoza this morning, and we agreed that whatever we could do to help out the Cypress Neighborhood, the council member that represents that area will do," he said. "This should not happen to the Cypress Neighborhood Council or any neighborhood. I am grateful the mayor agreed to assist them, and I am grateful for the activities the police department has taken. It will probably be in the news shortly and the high risk involved for the men and women in law enforcement. Somehow, this has got to change in Oxnard."
Councilman Oscar Madrigal walked through the Cypress neighborhood, and there were concerns about sidewalks.
"I do have issues with Eugene Walk, the little area that's closed off," he said. "I guess it doesn't connect to anything, but if that's the original case, why didn't we make the entire property a park?"