New chief ready to crack down on speeders, curfew breakers
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
By SCOTT E. PACHECO
Speeders and minors with a taste for the nightlife, beware.
In the next few weeks, Bay City police officers will begin taking a more assertive approach to corralling you.
''I want more proactive enforcement,'' said Bay City Police Chief Michael Cecchini. ''I don't like sitting back and waiting.''
Cecchini said he was hired to bring new ideas to the table - and he intends to use a campaign that targets speeders and curfew breakers as a start.
''We're addressing a small issue, but it does lead to bigger things,'' he said.
Cecchini said he will rely on his officers to create enforcement programs and hopes to implement them by the end of April or the beginning of May.
The first issue is dealing with the curfew. For minors
16-years-old and younger, the curfew extends from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. For 17-year-olds, the curfew is from midnight to 5 a.m.
Cecchini said the department will address the spirit of the law, and not cite minors who are out, for example, on their way home after a late work shift or a movie.
''There have been issues of juvenile crime in Bay City,'' he said. ''One of the things we can do is enforce curfew hours.''
As far as traffic enforcement, Cecchini wants to set up a system where offenders will be directed by police into a parking lot where officers will be waiting to write tickets. This will help avoid the need for officers to increase their speed on city streets to catch up to speeders.
''We want to make Bay City safer,'' Cecchini said. ''If we can get people to slow down, that's a good thing.
''We will let the criminal element know that we are out there. It's a tool to let the criminal element know that we are on the ball.''
When asked if the crime issues in Bay City are black and white, Cecchini said that racial profiling is not a part of crime suppression.
''I'm not worried about race, color, creed or anything like that,'' he said. ''If you are coming into Bay City to do crimes, we are going to do our best to catch you and put you in jail.''
- Scott E. Pacheco covers Bay City for The Times. He can be reached at 894-9646 or by e-mail at email@example.com.