Councilwoman Zapf Questioned by Community and Media on Her Police Camera Plan

by on January 28, 2016 · 4 comments

in Civil Rights, Culture, Media, Ocean Beach, Politics, San Diego

Lorie Zapf OBTC meet 1-27-16

Lorie Zapf questioned by NBC7 reporter Dave Summers on the camera controversy.

Audience at OB Town Council Meeting Divided Over the Police Cameras

The packed Masonic Center became focused on the planned installation of the police surveillance cameras along OB’s waterfront.

With standing-room only, Wednesday nights OB Town Council meeting became the center of the controversy over the 10-camera system, as Councilwoman Lorie Zapf (pronounced “Zaph”) was in attendance and forced to answer questions from the crowd and the media about them.

OBTC meet 1-27-16

Screen capture from NBC7 newsclip.

It was the first opportunity for opponents of the cameras – and community members at large – to question and confront Zapf about the cameras, as she snubbed a December community forum on them and has refused to meet with or even talk to the organized group formed in opposition. During questioning by one reporter as to why she didn’t attend the forum, she said she didn’t recall the meeting.

And at one point, after Zapf tried to give a rigorous defense of the camera, Town Council Gretchen Newsom took a straw poll of the audience. With at least 4 local TV cameras rolling, hands went up – and it was clear that the crowd was split almost down the middle between supporting and opposing the cameras. (It may have been 60-40, with supporters in the majority.)

Newsom spontaneously announced: “See what did I tell you. It’s divided.”

Always loving a good fight, conflict or whatever draws eyes, the local TV stations have capitalized on the OB camera controversy. And rightly so, as they are part of the media, they have cameras. Most of the television accounts of the cameras and Wednesday night’s meeting were ultimately sympathetic to proponents of the cameras but a couple were quite critical – and hammered away at Zapf.

Here they are, the TV reports:

Dave Summers of NBC7 was fairly good – OB Surveillance Camera Program Moves Ahead Despite Concerns

This title was good: Surveillance cameras spark outrage in Ocean Beach by CBS8 with the opening,

Ocean Beach residents met face-to-face Wednesday night with the councilwoman who is pushing for police cameras along Ocean Beach. 

Councilwoman Lorie Zapf has been met with resistance since she announced her 2016 legislative proposals, and on Wednesday night, the focus was on her push for surveillance cameras along the waterfront.

This headline by 10News was fair: Ocean Beach community is divided over plan to add 10 security cameras to public beaches with the sub-head: Merchants and residents don’t see eye-to-eye

Here’ s Fox5 .

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Posey January 28, 2016 at 9:31 pm

During the meeting last night, Laurie Zapf was asked more than once if the police cameras in Mission Beach worked, since they had been vandalized. She was also asked if the cameras on top of the police shack in the Ocean Beach Pier parking lot worked. Neither she nor the police that were present at the meeting knee whether they worked or not. What an expensive boondoggle!

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Posey January 28, 2016 at 10:06 pm

Oops! I mean they didn’t know-not they didn’t knee! 13

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Frank Gormlie Frank Gormlie January 29, 2016 at 9:39 am

It’s clear that the local media understand OB is divided on the cameras issue, just not the politicians and police.

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Debbie April 30, 2016 at 3:27 pm

Reader article today http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2016/apr/30/stringers-cops-when-you-need-them-ocean-beach/

Looks like OB does not need camera but cops assigned to this area that are committed to protect and serve. Who is responsible for lack in police personnel and/or dispatchers? Falconer or the Ms. Police Chief or both? Whoever it is they are FAILING!

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