Last week, Bryan Stow, a San Francisco Giants fan, was the victim of a brutal attack at Dodger Stadium. In the wake of this senseless act of violence, I have been working with Police Chief Charlie Beck, the Los Angeles Police Department, Dodgers Owner Frank McCourt and the Dodgers Organization, and the City Council to take the necessary steps to preserve a fan-and-family-friendly environment at Dodger Stadium.
As a young boy, I enjoyed Dodger games with the local YMCA and Boy Scouts, and I have fond memories of watching our Boys in Blue play at Chavez Ravine. But in recent years, many people have noticed that the fan experience lacks the courteousness and civility it once had. And with the attack on Bryan Stow last week, the entire city was awakened to the grim reality that our stadium environment has become something we can no longer be proud of. Our goal is to bring back the enjoyment and exhilaration that Dodger games bring us as fans, without worrying that we could put ourselves or our families at risk simply by enjoying a day at the ballpark.
Beginning April 14 -- at the Dodgers next home game -- you will see a number of changes at Dodger Stadium. The LAPD will increase its presence at the park with the addition of more uniformed and plain-clothes police officers. They will be there to enforce a zero-tolerance stadium violence policy as well as a "No Tailgating" rule in the parking lots and surrounding areas before, during and after games.
The Dodgers are doing their part on stadium grounds by increasing the use of cameras, participating in post-gameday debriefings with the LAPD, engaging in a regular review of the stadium security plan, and agreeing to revoke season ticket status from any season ticket holder involved in any illegal conduct. Generously, the Dodger Organization has also announced that they will compensate the City of Los Angeles for the cost of the increased deployment of officers.
As for the two perpetrators of last week's heartless attack, my only hope is that they do the right thing and turn themselves in to the LAPD. If you have information on this crime, please call Northeast Detectives L. Burcher or P.J. Morris at (213) 847-4261 or 1-877-LAPD-24-7 during weekends or non-business hours. If you wish to submit your tip anonymously, you can call Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or text C-R-I-M-E-S with your cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters "LAPD." Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.
If you would like to support the Stow family during this very difficult time, you can donate here.
Follow Antonio Villaraigosa on Twitter: www.twitter.com/villaraigosa