SAN DIEGO (CBS 8/CNS) - A military operation is getting underway Friday morning, which involves more than a thousand area armed services members, not fighting a war, but fighting poverty.
It's the annual Stand Down for Homeless Veterans. During this three day event former veterans, who are living on the streets of San Diego, will get free access to showers, food and a wide range of medical, legal and other social services starting Friday morning.
One woman who was a U.S. Air Force veteran spoke to News 8 about how things are going in her life:
"It is good to be here, gets some help as well as being around other veterans who are similar to me so that we can share our stories," Jay-Neece.
Stand Down for Homeless Veterans is hosted by the Veterans Village of San Diego. During the event, the upper athletics fields at the downtown school campus take on a military atmosphere as tents and cots are set up for homeless veterans. The event runs through the weekend.
A record 1,003 people sought services at last year's event, including veterans and their dependents. Of that total, 822 veterans were men and 56 were women.
The non-veteran pool included 24 children, 12 teenagers and 89 adult dependents. The participants were assisted by nearly 3,700 volunteers, many of whom were active-duty service members. Similar numbers are expected this year, organizers said.
Participants undergo physical, dental and mental health examinations, receive eyeglasses, take showers, get new clothing and hygiene kits, handle legal issues and look for work during the event.
Since "Stand Down" was started in San Diego in 1988 by the VVSD forerunner, the Vietnam Veterans of San Diego, more than 200 Stand Downs have been formed around the country. The event has also been featured "60 Minutes."
Police Chief David Nisleit Friday strongly disavowed what he described as an unofficial, "never authorized" departmental program that rewarded officers for making narcotics arrests.
On Friday, San Diego Police announced their search for a suspect involved in a robbery off the San Diego State University campus.
A court-appointed receiver has taken control of a Pacific Beach "hoarder house" that has accumulated trash, created unsafe conditions for children and harbored vermin in recent years, the San Diego City Attorney's Office announced Friday.
The owners of Hauser's Patio reached out to News 8 Friday morning asking to be put in contact with the couple who had their furniture stolen from their patio in Pacific Beach this week.
On Thursday night, the HeartCore Leadership company purchased thousands of dollars worth of Domino's Pizza to feed San Diego's homeless in downtown.
A deadlocked jury prompted a judge to declare a mistrial Friday in the case against a man charged with murder in the 2002 disappearance of his 2-year-old stepson in San Diego.
Federal immigration officers arrested 115 people during a three-day operation in the San Diego area amid heightened tensions between the Trump administration and the state of California over immigration enforcement.