Rosie Sizer is a killer—of police precincts, if you believe the aggressive public relations campaign launched against her last week by nine North Portland neighborhood associations.
"The Portland Police Bureau intends to kill North Precinct," according to the "Save Our Precinct" fliers blanketing North Portland.
There are also hundreds of "Save Our Precinct" postcards pre-addressed to Mayor Tom Potter, printed on cardstock tinted St. Johns Bridge green. The precinct building sits in St. Johns, but the precinct's cops cover every North Portland neighborhood west of I-5.
"This is a community issue and we are concerned about the future," says St. Johns Neighborhood Association chair Thomas Ebert. "I think we are going to see a spike in feedback to city hall, and I think they are going to respond."
Neighbors also donned "Save North Precinct" Statue of Liberty-style crowns during a neighborhood association meeting on Monday, February 12.
Sizer told the neighbors that her "modest proposal" to remove a commander, two lieutenants, and six to eight sergeants from North Precinct will not affect their police service on a daily basis. North Precinct Commander Jim Ferraris—who faces re-assignment—backed her up.
"I think there is a lot of emotion tied to this," he told the Mercury. "But if you take the emotion off the table—in the future, they are not going to notice any difference."
Whether or not Sizer's plan will impact North Portland in the short term, the neighbors were more upset by Sizer's admission that she cannot make promises about the future—would the precinct close entirely at some point down the line?
"What I cannot answer is, 'Is this the first step to closing North Precinct?'" Sizer told them. "Because I cannot speak for the next police chief. And as you all know, [chiefs] don't last very long."