The Highland Area Chamber of Commerce held its first in-person quarterly breakfast in over a year on Tuesday, June 22, with Highland Police Chief Casey Jiles as the guest speaker.
Jiles said he “cares tremendously about this city [Highland],” and that he tries to make himself personally available to everybody, sometimes to the detriment and sacrifice of his personal life, but, he said, that is what he signed up for when he joined the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.
Jiles said that Highland has the busiest call volume per deputy sheriffs in San Bernardino County.
He said that it’s no secret that Highland needs more deputies. He has asked deputies from neighboring areas to come in and help out when needed.
He also shared that when he first came to Highland in August, during the transition, period he saw a rise of drugs, illegal gun possession and violent crime on local streets.
He also said that there were one to two shootings a week.
Jiles said the first thing he did when he took over was to assign seven to nine deputies “to hunt down these thugs that are terrorizing the streets.”
Those actions “significantly lowered” the department’s violent crime numbers and the weekly shootings had stopped, according to Jiles.
Jiles said the department’s focus right now is to lower the amount of fireworks calls.
He thanked the Highland City Council for raising the fine for using fireworks illegally within the city limits to $1,000.
Jiles said since school has let out for the summer he has redeployed some of his deputies to crack down on illegal street racing that has taken place on Greenspot Road as well as mail theft.
Jiles said that “quality of life issues” are important to him and that he “takes it very seriously.”