Latino Education About Law Enforcement Services (L.E.A.L.E.S.)
The majority of Stockton residents are U.S. born, but according to the U.S. Census Bureau, an estimated 44 percent of Stockton residents speak a language other than English at home. A large number of those residents are recent immigrants and not fluent English speakers. After several months of meetings with Latin business owners, the Stockton Police Department noticed a pattern of crime that targeted Latino migrant farm workers. Their investigation found two main reasons why Spanish-speaking migrant workers were vulnerable victims:
They carried large amounts of cash, and they were afraid to report the crime to the police for fear of deportation. L.E.A.L.E.S. started in 2005 to prevent and reduce crimes targeted at Latino farm workers in the area. The past few years have seen a reduction in these crimes due in part to increased reporting.