California’s Crime-Plagued Bay Area Now Has a Problem With Pirate Attacks

(Getty Images)
September 14, 2023

Crime in California's Bay Area has now moved off land, as authorities are facing a scourge of pirates.

Boaters in marinas on the Oakland Estuary, in the East Bay, are facing stolen boats and destruction of property as pirates on dinghies board boats during the night.

"Over the last couple of months it’s become extremely severe, boats are being stolen almost on a nightly basis," Brock DeLappe, former Oakland Marina harbormaster, said. "Residents in marinas are scared, they’re talking about forming groups, they’re arming themselves. Someone’s going to get hurt if this is not taken seriously by authorities."

The police in the area are doing little to apprehend the criminals, CBS News reported:

Steven Young outfitted his boat, the "Bay Escape," to serve as a survival craft in case of a large earthquake or disaster.

But that plan was sunk recently when thieves stole the 40-foot Sea Ray yacht from its slip at the Embarcadero Cove Marina. They spotted it a few days later, stuck on some nearby rocks, with people still aboard.

Young called the police.

"I told them somebody's on the boat; they're moving it as we speak," recalled Young. "Can you just go down and impound it? The police gave us, 'Well do you have a police report?' I said, 'No, we just found it. It's grounded; there's people on it. Can you do anything?' They said, 'We can't do anything. What you need to do is get a police report.'"

Young said the police never came. He said it wasn't until days later, when the insurance company called them, that the boat was recovered. But by then it was too late.

It's the latest example of soaring crime in the Bay Area. San Francisco, the largest city in the region, is losing businesses at an increasing rate.

Marc Benioff, cofounder and CEO of Salesforce, said last month that his company may be hosting its final "Dreamforce" tech conference in San Francisco this year, pointing to attendees' fears about safety in the city.

Salesforce has given tens of millions of dollars to fight homelessness and crime, but the city continues to struggle with public safety, an issue that has prompted dozens of businesses to close or relocate.

Homicides in San Francisco have increased nearly 40 percent from 2020 to 2022, and deaths from fentanyl have spiked.

Published under: San Francisco