Antioch Police apologize for slow response times to business burglaries this week

Damage to Hillcrest Taphouse and Cocina Medina damage on Feb. 15, 2023 shown in photos and a video posted on their respective Facebook pages.

“…our response to the…burglary incidents fell short of our goals, and I want to be very clear about that.” Lt. Michael Mellone

Tailgaters broken front window is shown boarded up. Photo courtesy of Denise Cantrell

By Allen D. Payton

In response to multiple business burglaries in Antioch, this week the Antioch Police Department issued a statement on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2023 apologizing for the slow response times.

A list and videos of various restaurants that were broken into was published on Facebook and by another media source, including Hillcrest Taphouse, Cocina Medina, Muscle Maker Grill and Tailgaters Sports Bar & Grill. A Thursday, February 15 post on the Hillcrest Tap Facebook page shows photos of the damage and reads, “So somebody broke into the restaurant this morning, alarm company called me when they shattered the front door before they even got into the restaurant we called the police they spent 10 minutes going through the restaurant loading up backpack trying to get into everything. Police never showed up. I’ve been in the restaurant for close to 1 and half hours and the police still haven’t showed up. They said they have no officers available for non-emergency. So basically they’re saying it’s a free ride to break in to any restaurant or business because people know that there’s no repercussions for it because the police aren’t going to show up.”

A video posted on the Cocina Medina Facebook page, yesterday shows the damage and included the brief comment, “What’s the point?”

According to a report on it took police four hours to respond to the burglary at Cocina Medina.

An employee of Muscle Maker Grill cleans up the damage. Photos courtesy of Denise Cantrell

Following is the APD’s statement:

“February 16, 2023

To the Antioch Community:

We are aware of recent concerns about our police response to in-progress property crimes (such as burglaries). I wanted to take a few moments to offer a few words – and apologize. Specifically, our response to the Hillcrest Restaurant & Taphouse and Cocina Medina burglary incidents fell short of our goals, and I want to be very clear about that.

When our Dispatch Center receives an emergency call, they often get triaged based on our available officer resources, and whether the incident is a threat to life, property, or both. In this instance, all of our officers were committed to high priority calls, and we did not respond in a timely manner to these burglary incidents. We have looked into both incidents, found areas where we could’ve done better, and are taking immediate steps to address it.

If I could ask our community, please do not fault our hard-working officers or dispatchers for this lack of performance. I can tell you – without question – that our officers and dispatchers take great pride in serving and protecting Antioch, especially since many of them are from here. In the majority of incidents, we would normally respond quickly to an in-progress burglary, but for these particular incidents we did not, and I apologize to these individual business owners, and our community.

We know that folks in Antioch do not like to hear excuses – especially from their Police Department. I can tell you we are taking immediate steps to improve our staffing levels through robust recruiting efforts. We are sending four police recruits to an academy in the next few days. Three out of four are from Antioch (the other from East County), and all represent a cross section of the community we serve. We also have 10 police applicants in our hiring process currently – and if they meet our high-standards – will be additional help for improving our staffing levels.

These recruiting efforts include concerted attempts to attract women and individuals from the wonderfully diverse community we serve. Soon, we will be announcing a nationwide campaign we have joined to improve our efforts to increase the numbers of women and diverse individuals into our Police Department. We look forward to telling you more about this very soon. My shameless plug is – if you know someone you think would make a great Antioch Police Officer, please ask them to visit our website, or give me a call.

We greatly appreciate the support we receive from everyone, but also appreciate (truly) when you hold us accountable when we fall short. Hopefully you’ve noticed our attempts to double-down on our transparency efforts. This is not just in-line with best practice policing reform efforts, but is our obligation to keep you informed about what’s going on, and also level with you when we fall short.

I am pleased to announce that we will have some positive news about these specific burglary incidents very soon – stay tuned. If anyone would like to talk to me about their concerns on this or any other matter where you expected better (or thought we did a good job), I can be reached at (925) 779-6938, or email:

Thank you, Antioch.

Michael Mellone

Lieutenant of Police

Professional Standards Unit

the attachments to this post:

APD burglaries response 2-16-23

Muscle Maker Grill damage

Hillcrest Taphouse & Cocina Medina damage 02-15-23

Tailgaters broken window plywood

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