City Council President Blames Homeless Outside Police Department for Dumping People in Los Angeles

BURBANK, California. — Last week was not the first time a homeless person was relocated from a neighboring city and abandoned in Los Angeles, City Council Speaker Paul Krekorian told NBC News.

In an interview Monday, Krekorian accused law enforcement across the region of previously transporting homeless people from neighboring towns to his district.

Krekorian said the man dropped off outside his North Hollywood office last week told his staff he had become homeless while living outside Los Angeles. He did not provide additional evidence that neighboring law enforcement agencies drop off unhoused people in Los Angeles.

On Friday, Krekorian released security video from his office showing the latest incident.

“We’ve known for a long time that other cities, other jurisdictions, would rather just push people toward Los Angeles than solve the problem themselves,” he told NBC News. “We’ve seen examples of this from time to time.”

In 2022, police officers in Burbank, a small city in Los Angeles County, dropped an unhoused man on the sidewalk outside a homeless service center in his district, Krekorian said.

His office is also aware of other similar cases involving the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, he said.

“We’re building housing. We’re building shelters. We’re doing whatever is necessary,” he said of the city of Los Angeles. “Other cities seem to do nothing but deliver people to our door, wash their hands of them and leave them, leave them, leave them.”

The sheriff’s department did not respond to a request for comment.

Security video Krekorian released last week appeared to show Burbank police officers dropping off a shoeless man and, he said, “an unhoused man in serious distress” outside his North Hollywood office.

In the video, the man, who has not been identified, fell to his hands and knees and put his head on the sidewalk as police walked away. He was then seen crawling on the sidewalk.

Los Angeles firefighters then took him to a hospital, Krekorian said.

The Burbank Police Department told NBC News that the officers seen in the video were taking the man back where he came from, but Krekorian refuted that statement.

The man told Krekorian’s staff that he had recently become homeless while living outside the city of Los Angeles and had no ties to North Hollywood, Krekorian said.

“It’s heartbreaking,” he said. “It was unimaginable to me that these police officers could do that, and it was even more heartbreaking to see him there, left alone, trying to crawl, trying to reach out to someone for help, and there was no one.” There’s everyone who could help.”

In a statement on social media, the Burbank Police Department said it “remains committed to treating the unhoused community with compassion and respect, and thanks Los Angeles City Council Speaker Paul Krekorian for brought this matter to our attention.

An investigation is continuing, police said.

Homelessness remains a persistent and visible problem across California, even as cities and counties have invested billions of dollars from local taxes and state programs to alleviate the crisis.

In her recent budget proposal, Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass called for allocating $950 million to fund homeless programs, down from the nearly $1.3 billion approved for the current exercise.

An estimated 181,000 people are homeless in California, representing about 28 percent of all homeless people in the country, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Los Angeles County is home to more than 71,000 homeless people.

Burbank counted 264 homeless people, a 9% drop in homelessness between 2020 and 2022, compared to a 4% increase in the county, according to the latest count from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.

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