By Dave Schwab
That’s the advice of San Diego Police Capt. Brian Ahearn, new commander of Northern Division, which includes La Jolla, when asked how people could best help officers do their jobs.
“If something is suspicious, amiss, then give us a call and let us come out and take a look at it,” he said citing an example of why calling is important.
“Sometimes when bikes have been stolen people figure, ‘I don’t want to bother the police,’ and they might be the 10th person in that one neighborhood who’s had a bike stolen that hasn’t called us.”
Ahearn noted the exchange of information “is huge for us,” because it “helps identify the trends, figure out who’s stealing these bicycles so we can put a stop to it.”
Northern Division’s beat is a 41-square-mile area of nearly 220,000 residents in Bay Ho, Bay Park, Clairemont Mesa East, Clairemont Mesa West, La Jolla, La Jolla Village, Mission Bay Park, Mission Beach, North Clairemont, Pacific Beach, Torrey Pines and University City.
Each of the communities has its own special crime problems.
In La Jolla, it’s car break-ins, especially down by the ocean. Ahearn said those crimes are something local residents can take preventative measures against.
“In La Jolla Shores, and all along the shoreline, people need to secure their valuables before they go in the water,” he said. “Bring your keys with you when you go out swimming, scuba diving or snorkeling, don’t leave them on a towel or in the bushes or on your tires where people may be watching or casing you.”
La Jolla’s geography, according to Ahearn, is an advantage in crime fighting. “We have one or two ways to go in and out, north through La Jolla Parkway and south through Bird Rock,” he said. “It sets up nicely for us in setting up surveillance posts.”
Ahearn said the police department prides itself on its peacekeeping role out in the community, and a prime example of that is the ongoing situation at Children’s Pool.
“What we’ve tried to do is establish some ground rules for the competing sides and try to get them to be a little more civil to one another,” he said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to create an environment where people will have the ability to express themselves there without being ridiculed or hurt because of it.”
A policeman since 1986, the father of two teens whose wife of 27 years is a nurse, Ahearn considers himself blue collar. “I’m a worker,” he said. “Like a lot of cops, we’ll roll up our sleeves and get the job done.”
Ahearn said he is proud to be top cop in Northern Division noting, “The City of San Diego has offered me a satisfying position the likes of which I never imagined. I’ve enjoyed every day: It’s not work, to serve the citizens of this great city — I look forward to doing it.”
Northern Division Police Station
Where: 4275 Eastgate Mall
Phone: (858) 552-1700
Hours: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday. Closed 11 a.m. to noon.