San Jose police are taking the fight to the criminals in one of the city's most troubled areas, and crime victims are applauding the move.
Fountain Alley, a corridor just south of Santa Clara Street between First and Second streets, has seen more than 60 reported crimes in the past month.
"You see some drug dealing, some crime, some prostitution here and there," business owner Nestor Zubizarreta said.
Now police are moving into the crime-riddled area for good. Capt. Jason Dwyer announced to his officers Wednesday that they will be moving to a vacant office space right in the middle of Fountain Alley.
Police have known about the problem area for years. They’ll make arrests, but that hasn’t stopped the problem. Crime here happens virtually daily.
Miguel Contreras said his convenience store has been robbed several times.
"I report to police, and they catch him, and three days later, he was on the street again," Contreras said.
Police said the frustration has boiled over.
"I think everybody has had enough," Dwyer said.
With an office in the area, officers will be able to write police reports there, hold briefings and take their lunch breaks.
The goal, Dwyer said, is "to increase our physical presence here, from officers to parked police cars. It's not to provide a storefront where people knock on the door and say, 'I want to file a police report.'"
The office will not be emblazoned with San Jose police markings, the department said, and will be available for use to Santa Clara County Sheriff's deputies as well. Funding for the new office came from a donation by the San Jose Police Foundation.
The department already had a soft opening of the office. It is expected to be fully operational within a couple weeks.