Oakland police retract Ghost Ship inspired policy on illegal parties, living spaces

OAKLAND, Calif. -- There's confusion in Oakland Thursday night in the wake of the deadly Ghost Ship Fire.

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ABC7 News confirmed the city issued a new directive to the police department, ordering it to crack down on illegal parties and living spaces, but hours later that order was suddenly retracted.

The Oakland Police Department's see and report directive lasted all of four hours before the city administrator stepped in and retracted the policy.

At 2 p.m. Oakland's assistant police chief ordered all officers to report, by email, any illegal parties like raves, or unpermitted living spaces in warehouses. The report has to include specifics and be completed the same day.

This follows last year's Ghost Ship Fire where 36 people died.

Recent reports indicate Oakland police knew people lived and partied there illegally, but code violations were never documented. The police union is upset.

"They're not engaged in building code violations," said "And this terrible tragedy should not be laid at the feet of hard working police officers."

Then, the city administrator sent an email saying the previous directive was, "Distributed prematurely and has been retracted."

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The confusion is frustrating.

Michela Gregory died in the fire and her father David said, "It's too bad it always takes a tragedy to make simple common sense changes."
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