Bay Area/ Oakland/ Food & Drinks
AI Assisted Icon
Published on March 25, 2024
Oakland In-N-Out Closes Over Safety Concerns, Ending 18-Year Run Amid Crime WaveSource: Google Street View

Oakland's last stronghold of the famed In-N-Out Burger bid farewell on Sunday as the chain's only city location closed its doors after a history of 18 years, citing an untenable rise in neighborhood crime as the impetus, reported by KRON4.

Despite a robust business and the infamous offering of animal style fries and the classic double-double, In-N-Out Chief Operating Officer Denny Warnick, in a statement revealed by Hoodline, expressed a dedication to staff and customer security that overrode profit, with car break-ins, vandalism, and armed robberies surpassing tolerable levels, the proximity to these risks dealt the final blow to the iconic Oakport Street joint, and the drive for scrumptious burgers and shakes proved insufficient to overcome the looming threat of crime.

As the eatery served up its last burgers, employees like Francis Panopio, who spent over a year working at the Oakland location and has a 15-year tenure with the company, lamented its shuttering due to rising crime rates, noting the safety of patrons and colleagues were always a top concern, "It’s just sad that it’s closing down, but you got to move on," Panopio told KRON4.

In the face of the closure, In-N-Out has pledged to maintain its support for Oakland through its charitable initiatives, and has offered employees at the Oakland site options to transfer to alternate locations or accept severance packages, a gesture that mirrors the company's statement of gratitude for the community's long-standing patronage and the assurance that "our top priority must be the safety and well-being of our Customers and Associates — we cannot ask them to visit or work in an unsafe environment," as reported by Hoodline.

This departure of In-N-Out leaves a void for local fast-food aficionados and, according to ABC7 News, the city officials are turning their hopes to incoming OPD Chief Floyd Mitchell to stem the tide of crime that could lead to further business exits; city council member Noel Gallo expects decisive action, "It’s going to take a strong police chief action and working with police department in the neighborhood to make sure this doesn’t continue," he stated earnestly.