When last you heard from “The Blockwatch Beat,” crime was the main topic. It still is, but this time you’re just going to get an update.
The March 24 edition of “The Blockwatch Beat” brought news of several new crime trends in the area. While no one has been caught yet, the police are very aware of the situation. Patrols have been stepped up and officers are doing everything that they can to track the crime and look for a pattern.
They are asking that you get accurate descriptions of the folks that you call about and that you try to remember if you have seen them before in the neighborhood. Of course, keep in mind that not everyone out for a walk is a criminal!
Use your common sense when dealing with possible criminal activity or suspicious people out and about in the neighborhood.
A common question is what traits make a person suspicious? Some examples are: looking carefully at vehicles and trying door handles, casing homes and waiting for residents to leave or calling it in on a cell phone, anyone who looks truant, or someone repeatedly walking the area or alleys.
We have weathered an increase in criminal activity before and pulled through nicely. There is no reason to be afraid or to panic; remember, these seem to be crimes of opportunity with no desire to deal with actual residents. They all seem to be just “grab and go,” fast food type crime.
That doesn’t make it any better for those who have been the victim of a crime but the good news is that your blockwatch and neighbors are there for you. We will help you with clean-up, working with the police, or trying to locate stolen property.
Get proactive with taking your safety into your own hands. Bring a dog home from the local shelter or purchase an alarm system and set it all the time. Don’t leave valuables out in the open in your home; make sure that you have opaque shades so that someone on the street can’t see into your home. With the rise in popularity of flat screen televisions that are easy to carry, make sure that yours is away from windows and perhaps in a cabinet.
Get to know your neighbors and join your blockwatch. Do a quick alley drive and zip around your block when leaving your home at any time.
Always report anything suspicious to 645-4545 and to your blockwatch. Don’t let the criminals win – fight back with your community!
Also, Westgate Blockwatch will be holding their first meeting of the year at the end of April. Watch the Westside Messenger for all the details and come out to the meeting. This is a good way to support your local blockwatch!