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With a recent spike in follow-home robberies, smash-and-grab burglaries and the murder of Jaqueline Avant, Beverly Hills and surrounding Los Angeles communities have been rocked by crime.

Joseph, who works at his family’s business in Beverly Hills, said the crime wave has “been horrible, if we’re going to be honest.”

“We had a crazy person enter here yesterday with a knife,” he said.

However, police in Beverly Hills have been very active, Joseph added.

“The response time was literally like 20 seconds. They came after him and arrested him,” Joseph said.

Beverly Hills Police Department Chief Mark Stainbrook is taking a stand to stop crime, meeting with several business owners, beefing up patrols and monitoring the 2,000 cameras citywide while working with other agencies.

“I was looking at the robbery rates over the past two years, the violent crime rates, and they’re way up from 2019,” Stainbrook said.

To make matters worse, some of these crimes are being used to set up for future burglaries.

For example, during a smash-and-grab at Home Depot in Lakewood, thieves took off with hammers and axes, among many other tools that could be used to break into other stores.

“When that store was broken into and all the things were stolen, they can commit smash-and-grabs, it went out all over the region, and of course we put our people on alert, and we were able to get a convoy people coming into the city and arrest several people and stop several cars,” Stainbrook said.

Stainbrook said it’s been tough to keep people in jail, even with a lengthy criminal record, like Avant’s alleged killer.

“We are arresting the right people, but there are other parts of the criminal justice system that also need to work collaboratively to keep the right people in jail and rehabilitate the people that will be rehabilitated,” Stainbrook said.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva and District Attorney George Gascón have recently found themselves publicly debating the same subject.

In Beverly Hills, the focus remains on catching perpetrators and preventing them from offending again, Stainbrook said.

“We will go after you and do everything we can to put you in jail if you’re going to commit crime in Beverly Hills. It’s as simple as that,” he said.