Jul 2, 2024

Supporting the Central Valley: CHP partnership in Bakersfield results in 677 arrests

What you need to know: State law enforcement partnership in Bakersfield after four months has resulted in the arrest of 677 suspects and the recovery of 338 stolen vehicles.

BAKERSFIELD – Protecting the Central Valley through continued law enforcement efforts, Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the California Highway Patrol’s (CHP) joint operations with the Bakersfield Police Department have resulted in 677 arrests and 338 vehicles recovered. In four months, the CHP and Bakersfield law enforcement have worked together to address crime in the region.

“Working alongside our local partners in Bakersfield, the CHP has made significant progress in recovering stolen vehicles, removing crime-linked guns from the streets, and arresting offenders. This ongoing partnership continues our work to build and uplift public safety in the Central Valley, delivering real and measurable results for our communities. We remain committed to working in Bakersfield and across the state to further reduce criminal activity and make our neighborhoods safer.”

Governor Gavin Newsom

The collaboration between the Bakersfield Police Department and the CHP focuses on vehicle theft and organized crime.

“Partnerships with local law enforcement agencies are critical to our crime suppression mission. By working together on daily enforcement and comprehensive operations, we will continue to see a significant impact on reducing crime in communities,” said CHP Commissioner Sean Duryee. “Together, we create a safer environment for everyone.”

In 2023, as part of California’s Real Public Safety Plan, the Governor announced the largest-ever investment to combat organized retail crime in state history, with the Bakersfield Police Department being awarded $6.2 million specifically to prevent and respond to organized retail theft, motor vehicle or motor vehicle accessory theft, and cargo theft.  

Overall enhanced public safety efforts

Building on the Newsom Administration’s efforts to improve public safety in key parts of California, including Oakland and San Francisco, the state continues to take significant steps to ensure the safety of local communities like Bakersfield. 

California has invested additional resources since 2019 to fight crime, help local governments hire more police, and improve public safety. Most recently, the Governor announced a new partnership between the Bakersfield Police Department and CHP to expand enforcement actions targeting  auto theft and retail crime, and conduct high-visibility, proactive traffic enforcement. Since then, there has been significant positive progress in the region — including the arrest of 302 individuals for illegal activity and the recovery of 182 stolen vehicles.

Through the CHP’s Organized Retail Crime Task Force, since January 2024, the state has conducted 279 investigations, leading to 636 arrests and recovering more than 185,500 stolen goods valued at $4.2 million. Overall, this includes an annual 310% increase in proactive operations targeting organized retail crime, and special operations across the state to fight crime and improve public safety.

How we got here

Today’s announcement builds on the state’s continued investments in Bakersfield and the larger Kern County area focused on improving education equity, arts and culture, health, economic development, public safety and the overall well-being of the community.

Recently, Governor Newsom released the state’s 10-Point Plan to Beautify Bakersfield to support the city and surrounding region to improve street safety, enrich public spaces, and add to the already meaningful supportive state programs. 

A detailed overview of the state’s investments in Bakersfield and Kern County is available here. The 10-Point Action Plan can be viewed here.