A Union Pacific official said last week that the company is growing concerned over the recent spate of thievery going on at its Los Angeles rail lines. The situation is getting so out of hand that the company is considering leaving the state entirely.
Union Pacific Sends Letter To LA District Attorney
UP director of public affairs Adrian Guerrero sent a letter to LA District Attorney George Gascon Union Pacific. He listed the many problems the company is experiencing at its Los Angeles facility.
This includes the rampant thievery that affects up to 90 shipping containers a day. Thieves are brazenly stealing thousands of packages.
“Since December 2020, UP has experienced an over 160% increase in criminal rail theft in Los Angeles County. In several months during that period, the increase from the previous year surpassed 200%.
In October 2021 alone, the increase was 356% compared to October 2020,” Guerrero wrote. He also said that theft is not the crime happening.
He also said that Union Pacific employees are experiencing increased incidents of assaults and armed robberies as they perform their duties. In fact, the problem affects over 90 containers per day.
Union Pacific Short $5 Million Due to Criminal Acts
Guerrero added that Union Pacific has lost over $5 million in “claims, losses, and damages” to the company. This does not include the losses incurred by its customers. The UP official then turned its ire at the county’s loose policies on crime and repeat offenders.
Guerrero wrote that once criminals get caught, authorities reduce the charges to a misdemeanor or petty offense. This means that the criminal can pay a fine and then get back on the streets the same day.
He said that the system allows criminals to re-victimize Union Pacific over and over again. In some cases, criminals boast to officers that charges go down to simple trespassing.
He said it’s no surprise that UP continues to experience a significant increase in criminal rail theft since last year.
LA Needs To Hold Criminals Accountable
In addition, Guerrero said that while UP understands the social justice intentions of looser policy, LA still needs to act. LA needs to “support our partnership efforts with local law enforcement and hold these criminals accountable,” he added. More importantly, they should “help protect our employees and the critical local and national rail network.”
Right now, Guerrero said that the problem is so bad that Union Pacific might need to consider serious changes. The company might now consider “changes to our operating plans to avoid Los Angeles County.”
Watch the Fox 11 Los Angeles News video reporting that thieves targeting cargo trains, stealing packages along LA tracks:
What do you think of the rampant robbery and other criminal activities going on at Union Pacific trains and train stops? Is this due to lax security? Or, is this more about loose policies that allow criminals to return to their prey again and again?
Tell us what you think. Share your opinions in the comments section below.