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Antioch Police Department's Traffic Unit currently staffed by a single officer

Antioch's newly relaunched Police Department Traffic Unit has a single officer
Antioch's newly relaunched Police Department Traffic Unit has a single officer 03:53

The Antioch Police Department relaunched its Traffic Unit, and it's currently a one-man team. 

"So, these marks actually indicate the tire friction mark on the motorcycle when it slammed on the brakes and it goes for 120 feet," explained  Sgt. Robert Green of the Antioch Police Department.

Green is picking up the pieces after an accident that seriously injured a motorcyclist - who collided with one car before being hit by another that left the scene.

"Hit the motorcyclist and dragged the motorcyclist," Green said. "So now I'm trying to find any evidence in any cameras or anything in the area that will help me identify the other vehicle."

The investigation is now in Sgt. Green's hands, as he is the sole member of the newly relaunched Antioch Police Department Traffic Unit.

"I'm responsible for doing traffic enforcement during the day," he said. "I schedule the overtime. I have to work the overtime. I also get called in when we have a significant crash like this."

So, it's back to the station for the investigative part of this incident. 

"So this is the car," Green said, looking at a blurry photo. "I have everyone else. This is the car I need to find and figure out why it didn't stay on scene."

And Green really is doing it all. He pulled together funding from the state Office of Traffic Safety for new bikes and LIDAR equipment. He's picked up the investigations into major accidents single single-handedly rebooting the traffic division after it was closed for more than a year because of staffing issues. 

"I ended up recovering a lot of stolen cars," Green said. "I mean it's not a secret right now. We have a lot of stolen cars in the city of Antioch."

He'll also become part of Antioch's ongoing effort against sideshows, something that has plagued neighbors in recent years.

"I think after Covid there has been, and OTS will back us up, there's been data that shows that there's been more dangerous driving after Covid," Green said. "Mainly because there wasn't any patrolling on any traffic laws during that time."

As for doing it all alone, Green said he does get help from within the department, and beyond.

"Anytime I send a social media post I'll get tons of calls," he said of public support. "People in the community help point me in the right direction, so I'm not by myself. The community is invested in this as well. They're very busted in traffic safety."

Green doesn't mind picking up the extra slack. He's just happy to see the unit up and rolling again.

"That's what I signed up for," he said of his work. "I'm a public servant. Someone has to do it. We're so short. I'm not the only one picking up pieces, so I don't deserve to work any less."

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