Oakland, CA

BART to consider reinstating masking rule aboard trains

Refugio Garcia

BART likely to reinstate mask mandate

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The no-mask policy for BART passengers could be short-lived as officials from the transit agency will now consider incorporating a rule requiring masks aboard BART trains into the agency’s code of conduct, KRON4 reports.

The Bay Area Rapid Transit’s board of directors will discuss, and possibly vote, on the proposed safety measure on Thursday.

Bringing back masks was proposed by BART’s board president, Rebecca Saltzman who believes wearing masks would protect passengers, especially those at high risk.

If passed, the rule would be in effect until July 18, with the possibility of being extended by the board of directors.

However, BART passengers with medical conditions or disabilities, as well as children two years and younger, would not be required to wear a mask.

If approved, passengers failing to comply with the rule would be ordered to leave.

City of Antioch swears in interim police chief

The City of Antioch on Wednesday swore in former San Francisco Police Commander Steven Ford as the city’s interim police chief, ushering in the first hire from outside the department in over 11 years, East Bay Times reports.

Ford’s career in law enforcement spans 31 years serving with the San Francisco Police Department where he most recently served as commander of community engagement.

In addition, Ford teaches criminal justice at San Francisco State University and City College. He holds a doctorate from St. Mary’s College in educational leadership.

“Well, here I am faced with this incredible opportunity to positively influence this organization and to pass on what I deem important – 21st-century policing policies, strategies, philosophies and practices of procedural justice, and to be a catalyst for positive change,” Ford said.

Federal oversight of the Oakland PD might end after 20 years

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Federal oversight of the Oakland Police Department might end after 20 years following numerous scandals, KRON4 reports.

On Wednesday, a federal judge issued an order for a one-year probationary period for the department to transition to ending the oversight.

Judge William Orrick is expected to announce the specific details after the city attorney’s office stated that they are open to start the probationary period in order to terminate the oversight.

The federal oversight began following a class action lawsuit filed in 2000 by six Oakland men who alleged they were assaulted by Oakland police and framed for drug charges.

The officers implicated in the lawsuit were not found guilty of criminal wrongdoing but a subsequent civil suit required the department to complete 51 tasks to improve the training and conduct of officers.

Only one of those tasks has yet to be completed by the department.

“Right now I think we’re going to wait on the judge’s order to give us clarity on what the judge would like to see from the department moving forward but I think we can acknowledge by the CMC filings, by the plaintiff’s attorneys as well as some of the things we just spoke of, they all recognize the department has made tremendous strides so we look forward to what the judge’s final ruling will be,” said Oakland Police Chief Leronne Armstrong on Wednesday.

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