Freight trains on railroad tracks in the East Los Angeles hub have become a favorite target for thieves. Although busy hubs like this one often experience losses, the problem has worsened over the last year, according to The New York Times.

CBS Journalist John Schreiber was able to get a glimpse of the dire situation in a video that he posted to Twitter.

“Keep hearing of train burglaries in LA on the scanner so went to LincolnHeights to see it all. And… there’s looted packages as far as the eye can see,” wrote Schreiber. “Amazon packages, UPS boxes, unused Covid tests, fishing lures, epi-pens. Cargo containers left busted open on trains.”

Union Pacific, one of the largest railroad companies in the U.S., said it may avoid operating in the Los Angeles county following a 160% increase in theft, according to CNN.

In a letter, Union Pacific said it has made over 100 arrests in partnership with the Los Angeles Sheriff department and even expanded its own security but the problem hasn’t gone away.

  • “Studies show that prosecution of the offenses driving the bulk of misdemeanor cases have minimal, or even negative, long-term impacts on public safety,” District Attorney George Gascón said when the directive was issued.
  • “While we understand the well-intended social justice goals of the policy, we need our justice system to support our partnership efforts with local law enforcement, hold these criminals accountable, and most important, help protect our employees and the critical local and national rail network,” said Union Pacific spokesperson Adrian Guerrero.