Saturday, October 1, 2022
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Significant Homeless Camp Cleared from Clear Lake Shoreline in Lakeport—Over Eleven Tons of Trash Removed

The following is a press release issued by the Lakeport Police Department:


Yesterday The City of Lakeport‘s Lakeport Police Department and Lakeport Public Works Department staff removed a significant homeless encampment from public property along the shoreline of Clear Lake off the east side of the private properties of 1 First Street and 2 C Street. The persons using the encampment were trespassing across the private properties mentioned to gain access. For approximately the past two years this location has been a regular site of camps and a concern for surrounding residential and commercial property owners for numerous reasons including safety, sanitary conditions and fire danger. In fact in recent months numerous wildland fires have started in the area and caused threats for surrounding neighborhoods. Police surveyed the property and contacted the occupants numerous times over the past few months in efforts to mitigate the situation. Officers and our embedded Crisis Responder from Lake Family Resource Center worked with occupants numerous times to offer resources from the many agencies working on homelessness in Lake County. On July 6th by direction of the Chief of Police, the property was ordered vacated, with written notices posted as well as personally served on occupants giving them sufficient time to remove their belongings. Both on July 6th and yesterday we also took crisis and outreach staff from Lake County Behavioral Health with us to further offer resources for any persons remaining in the encampment. The written notices and removal times are required by federal court case law decisions.

Upon arrival at 7 AM yesterday morning, three occupants were located in the camp. The occupants were again offered and one did accept resources and transportation to a local homeless shelter. The person’s valuables which could not be transported to the shelter were secured and safeguarded. The other two declined resources and were ordered to vacate immediately or face arrest. They left the area without further incident.

A crew of 10 public works and police staff with necessary equipment proceeded to clean the camp and rehabilitate the area over the next 9 hours. This work included hauling off 75 yards of garbage totaling 22,360 pounds. It is important to note that had this trash not been removed, when the Clear Lake water levels returned to full or higher, it would have entered the lake. Today another 10 person crew is further rehabilitating the area to ensure it is safe and clean and reduce fire danger. In the future, police will be extra patrolling the area to ensure the encampment does not re-establish. The cleanup process alone, not including all of the previous outreach, is estimated to have cost the public $15,000.00. A series of photos is attached to show the garbage and conditions present at the time of the cleanup.

It is important to state that the removal of homeless camps from public property is complex and when we take this action we want to be sure that the problem will not just move down the street to the next neighborhood or business district. For this reason we are very persistent with offering resources and assistance with connecting people to programs including those for housing, medical care, behavioral health and drug and alcohol addiction. The most significant reasons we see people being in a homeless situation are behavioral health and substance abuse problems. Many of the people causing issues for neighborhoods and businesses are people who refuse our assistance because they do not want to recognize or change their conditions.

Additionally, many of our tools we used to have to deal with misdemeanor criminal behavior have been removed by voter or legislative initiatives. Much of this kind of criminal behavior is the very thing affecting the lives of the residents and business owners and generally making people feel unsafe or hesitant to use their public spaces or even being able to run their business. It is sometimes difficult for us to address this bad behavior but we want the community to know we continue to work hard every day to keep Lakeport safe. Please continue to contact us with your concerns.

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12 COMMENTS

  1. The early settlers got free land.

    The American dream is only for the rich at this point.

    The unhoused aren’t welcome anywhere on the planet.

    Homeless shelters have limited space.

    More and more working class people are becoming homeless due to the outrageous cost of housing.

    Just some thoughts

  2. Why did it take so long to address? Would it not have been more efficient to put a dumpster there in the first place for continuous trash pick up? Did any of the multitude of non profits visit there regularly to assist the homeless to better themselves and possibly move out of their situation? I just don’t understand why a blind eye is turned til it gets to this point. So you cleaned this one up after years of existence, now where will they go next? They will land somewhere and the cycle will begin anew.

  3. Mine eyes have seen the fury of a little plastic bic
    It can light a conflagration where the smoke is really thick
    The authorities all seek me cause they think I’m truly sick
    As the flames go marching on
    Very scary piromania
    Fire is not here to entertain ya
    Total lose is going to drain ya
    As the flames go marching on

    Every homeless person owns a Bic lighter and California is a box of tinder. Gaza has fire baloons sent into Israel every day but you don’t read it in media. California will burn from its war against the homeless

  4. Slaves were promised freedom and a chance to one day own your own home on your own property. The American dream…….now we’re all slaves, working our whole lives to make somebody else rich while the workers barely get by. Still selling freedom and the American dream to the slaves. There’s a lot of people that are one or two paychecks away from being homeless, and just don’t like to admit it.

    • It’s a shame that we think of and speak of humans as if they were cockroaches.

      The LOVE of money is why there are homeless individuals. The LOVE of money created this.

      The earth belongs to God and look what we’ve done to (with) it. Some are laughing as they count their millions.

      But what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world yet loses his own soul…

      The true cost of greed.

      • The gypsies were murdered by public response, not Nazi goals. Shelter in place laws kept them from motion, public required they move along. Death camps became the solution.
        Homeless are “those people”

  5. A camp was cleaned up behind Safeway a few weeks ago and there are people already back up there. There are a few people that do not feel safe, that is sad.. I’m lucky, I have a dog that will protect me but there are elderly people around me that don’t have that protection. I have seen confrontation with the homeless and the homeowner.

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MendoFever Staff
MendoFever Staff
Editor's Note: Whenever an article's byline reads "MendoFever Staff", the contents of that article were not composed by any of our reporters. Types of writing that will be attributed to "MendoFever Staff" include press releases, letters to the editor, op-eds, obituaries— essentially writing that is not produced by a reporter.

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