SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- At a news conference of local elected and community leaders, prosecutors and first responders, Sandy Fontana, the mother of slain San Jose Police Officer Jeffrey Fontana, issued a strong condemnation of Councilmember Rose Herrera for Herrera's baseless attacks on the professionalism of the San Jose Police Department.
"For Rose Herrera to accuse San Jose police officers of not making arrests or delaying their response to aid crime victims is despicable," Fontana said. "As a mother who lost a son in the line of duty it makes me sick, she ought to be ashamed of herself."
On Friday, voters received a mass mailer from Herrera's campaign accusing San Jose Police Officers of engaging in "work slowdown" where officers should not rush to emergency calls for service and when they arrive to not make arrests or issue citations.
The mailer was widely panned by elected and community leaders, local law enforcement and prosecutors as being untrue, despicable and reckless. Herrera has recently come under fire because under her watch, 345 police officers have left San Jose and her Council District has seen crime sky rocket including a 37-150% increase in residential burglaries, 1,200% increase in rapes and police response times to emergencies have risen 57% due to a lack of police patrol officers.
"Rose Herrera telling the public that police officers are laying down on the job shows she has no grasp of reality and is ethically bankrupt," said San Jose Police Officer Scott Mcculloch, a 13-year veteran and member of San Jose's SWAT like team, MERGE. "My unit just participated in rounding up 10 gang members we believe were responsible for two murders this summer. It took dedication, dozens of hours and sacrifice to make those arrests happen. Rose Herrera ought to be ashamed of herself."
"Rose Herrera's reckless accusations sends the wrong message to the community and will discourage them from calling 911 and reporting crimes and cooperating in investigations. Clearly this shows Herrera either has little grasp of the public safety challenges San Jose faces or she's delusional, in either case I believe she's unfit to serve," said Kevin Smith, local prosecutor, Santa Clara County Government Attorneys' Association.
SOURCE San Jose Police Officers' Association