San Diego police: Pedestrian deaths near record

SDPD patrols to target jaywalkers Thursday

SAN DIEGO - San Diego police have seen a high number of pedestrian deaths so far in 2013, and on Thursday, officers will hit city streets to keep others from the same fate.

"One is too many; we've had six," SDPD Lt. Steve Hutchinson told 10News.

Hutchinson said in February, six people were struck and killed on San Diego streets. In five of those cases, it was the fault of the pedestrian.

January and February seem to be particularly bad for some reason. In 2012, police said there were 20 pedestrian deaths, eight of which were caused by a pedestrian.  

"We've got people talking or texting on the phone and not paying attention. Couple that with motorists who aren't paying attention and we have to do something," Hutchinson said.

On Thursday, through midnight, a special traffic detail will be looking for flagrant violators.  

"We're going to do a lot of education to the public about the dangers of walking while distracted, but if there's an egregious violation, we'll cite them," Hutchinson said.  

Paid for through a grant, 25 to 30 motorcycle officers, as well as 10 patrol units, will be concentrating on two particular areas -- the Hillcrest-University Avenue corridor and the downtown and Gaslamp areas.

Hutchinson said the grant will allow the department to do future enforcement details in other areas at random times.

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