Over 200 Valley residents, including members of the Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils, area Neighborhood Council Public Safety Committees, and CERT members turned out for a Town Hall meeting with LAPD Deputy Chief Jose Villegas and the LAPD Operations- Valley Bureau to discuss public safety in the Valley.

Los Angeles City Councilmembers Nury Martinez, Paul Krekorian, and Felipe Fuentes addressed the packed Van Nuys City Hall on Wednesday night, with Councilman Krekorian remarking that today’s Los Angeles is “the safest this city has been in my lifetime.”

With media presence from the Daily News to CBS to Telemundo lining the room, special guest Deputy Chief Jorge Villegas addressed the crowd with encouraging news about the rapid decline in crime rates in the Valley.

Among the many positive trends he cited, Deputy Chief Villegas reported that violent crime in the Valley has decreased by 2.5 percent in the past year. Reducing not only crime, but also “the fear of crime,” he said, were the accomplishment of the LAPD and its many neighborhood partners throughout the Valley.

After opening with a snapshot of public safety in the Valley, he took a series of questions from the audience. Stakeholders from each neighborhood also had the opportunity to speak one-on-one with Senior Lead Officers after the event.

The Town Hall magnified the role of partnership between the LAPD and the communities it serves. Deputy Chief Villegas reiterated throughout the evening that the involvement of residents and cooperation of C-PABs, NCs, and Neighborhood Watches have contributed unequivocally to the drop in crime witnessed in recent years.The most important contribution of any stakeholder is simple: get involved.