The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, in an editorial, calls it “encouraging” that Brentwood, Clayton, Maplewood, Richmond Heights and Rock Hill are talking about ways to consolidate their firefighting efforts, but says it’s unfortunate the talks are about unifying the command structures and not overall fire departments. According to the Post-Dispatch, the five fire departments serve a population of 45,031, and the five fire stations are mostly within two miles of each other. Also that the departments are top heavy with chiefs and assistants. Joint fire command to include Brentwood, Maplewood, Richmond Heights
One chief proposed for 5-city joint fire command: Post-Dispatch
The plan calls for consolidating the command functions into one management team with one chief, three deputies, three battalion commanders and two inspectors.
Clayton, Rock Hill and Richmond Heights have approved a resolution to work with Brentwood and Maplewood (not yet approved the resolution) to study a joint fire command for the five cities. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: A study by Emergency Services Consulting International concluded “a consolidated administrative and support branch to oversee operation of the five fire departments would lead to improved efficiency and elimination of redundant effort,” improved firefighter safety and possibly cost-savings. Richmond Heights approves joint fire command study; Brentwood and Maplewood: not yet
The Post-Dispatch went into more detail about the proposal recently:
One chief would direct operations for the five participating cities. There would be three deputy chiefs, three battalion commanders and two inspectors.
Chauncey Watkins, 36, of St. Louis, was charged with stealing six bottles of alcohol from the Target store according to court and police records. It was his third stealing offense since 2007. At the Target store in Brentwood on July 13 at 10:44 p.m. Watkins selected six bottles of alcohol and hid them inside a bag. He walked out of the store without making any attempt to pay.
A Brentwood police SUV malfunctioned Thursday afternoon and crashed through the fence into an unoccupied play area at the Brentwood School District ECC, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. No one was hurt. The police vehicle went through the fence before stopping, damaging one of the play sets. Brentwood Chief of Police Dan Fitzgerald said the officer told him the SUV malfunctioned.
A plan is in the works to develop a joint fire command for Brentwood, Clayton, Maplewood, Richmond Heights and Rock Hill, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has reported. Rock Hill officials at their meeting on Tuesday passed a resolution authorizing their city administrator and fire chief to work with officials and fire chiefs from Brentwood, Clayton, Maplewood and Richmond Heights to set up a joint fire command staff structure. All cities will still have their own fire departments and fire stations, according to the Post-Dispatch. According to the Post-Dispatch: A study by Emergency Services Consulting International concluded “a consolidated administrative and support branch to oversee operation of the five fire departments would lead to improved efficiency and elimination of redundant effort,” improved firefighter safety and possibly cost-savings.
The Brentwood Police department has reported on Facebook that a suspect has been arrested and charged in the armed robbery that took place on Sonora Avenue on June 17. The victim’s car and personal items were stolen. The car was recovered in East St. Louis, Illinois on June 20. Brentwood detectives Tim Bone and Rick Litschgi and Administrative Assistant Jason Oesterreicher — with evidence they discovered in the car and further investigation — led to the discovery of the suspect, Montel Harkins, 17, of East St.
Brentwood has seen a spike in crime in the past few weeks, and Brentwood Chief of Police Dan Fitzgerald has gone to YouTube with a message for the city that the department is on the streets. He also has this advice for residents:
Lock your doors
Close your garage
Use your lights
Call 314-644-7100 if you see anything suspicious
Brentwood Mayor Chris Thornton sent an open memo regarding public safety to the Pulse, to be published on Monday. He also sent it to 40 South News, printed below:
I am writing to discuss recent criminal incidents in Brentwood and the City’s response. Let me start by stating that, in my opinion, the most important functions of government are providing those services that individuals cannot easily obtain on their own from other sources. Thus, public safety, roads, sidewalks, parks and other such services ware the most important functions of local government. It is no accident that I listed public safety first.
Brian Daniel Jefferson, 36, of St. Louis, was charged with stealing 10 bottles of tequila from the Brentwood Schnucks on January 19, according to Brentwood Police and court records. Jefferson was arrested by Kirkwood Police in possession of ten bottles of tequila that had been stolen from the Schnucks store in Brentwood the previous day. He was identified via surveillance video of the theft. He had been released from the scene of his arrest by Kirkwood, but was arrested several months later by Brentwood Police.
Brentwood Ward 1 residents in a meeting on Tuesday told Chief of Police Dan Fitzgerald they want to know what is being done to stop crime in the area, according to KMOV. They said they want police to beef up patrols. “We are trying to do stuff like this [hold a meeting] and communicate with the neighborhood and help them be a little more safe, maybe some more lighting,” Fitzgerald said. “Lock your cars, bring your valuables inside would be helpful. We have increased our patrols quite a bit in the neighborhoods.”
A man was carjacked on Sonora Avenue on June 17 (see KSDK).
Kiara Taylor, 26, of Florissant, was charged with stealing at least three North Face jackets and three sweatshirts from the Sports Authority in Brentwood, according to police and court records. Taylor and an accomplice put the clothing into a shopping cart and pushed it out of the store without trying to pay. They put the items into a waiting car and drove away. The merchandise was valued to be at least $634. Taylor was identified via surveillance video and was arrested several days later.
Brentwood Chief of Police Dan Fitzgerald reported a home burglary that took place Saturday afternoon on his Brentwood police blog, The Chief’s Desk. At about 4:45 p.m. on Saturday police received a call for a burglary in progress at a home in the 9400 block of Pine Avenue, he reported. The homeowner pulled into his driveway as the burglar was leaving his home. The burglar’s vehicle was in the driveway also. The suspect left the scene.