Police Check Out Pershing Park Homeless Complaints

City police will focus on complaints about homeless activities at Pershing Park, though they will not target Rev. Hank Drost’s Sunday morning ministry that’s taken place there for more than 20 years. Drost draws a sizable crowd — much to the consternation of nearby motels — distributing free food, socks, shoelaces, and toiletries. City Attorney Steve Wiley said there’s no constitutionally valid reason to ban Drost, who gives out prepackaged sandwiches and free sodas. In years past, Drost has warned Santa Barbara will be struck by a devastating earthquake if his ministry is hassled by city police.

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