Mitchell: Meeting Planned to Make City Hall ‘More Secure’ Following Break-In
A break-in over the weekend at New Bedford City Hall has Mayor Jon Mitchell looking for ways to make the aging facility more secure.
New Bedford Police say a first-floor window in the city's Election Office was breached late Sunday night, and that about $120 was missing from the Election Commission's petty cash drawer. No election records or computer equipment was reported missing, and there was no sign of entry into any other City Hall office.
"The police are on top of it," Mitchell said in his weekly appearance on WBSM. "I don't want to go into the details of an (active) investigation, but they have some leads and they think they'll be able to make something of it."
Mitchell said the crime itself may not seem like much, but he called it "disconcerting" nonetheless.
"My bigger concern is the security of City Hall," he said. "We're going to make sure that something like that doesn't happen again. There are some steps we can take to make sure everything is buttoned up better."
Mitchell said he does believe City Hall is a "secure building, especially with cash."
"The Treasurer's Office is treated like a bank almost, but we need to see what we can do better," he said. "We're going to be sitting down next week to talk about other measures that we can take to make the building more secure."
But he also knows that working in a building that is over 130 years old poses some unique security challenges.
"Ideally, there would be a time when New Bedford builds a new City Hall that has, among other modern features, modern security features that make it easier to guard the building at all hours, to monitor it," he said.