La Junta Police Neighborhood Watch Outreach Presentation

Description: The La Junta Police Department held a public Neighborhood Watch meeting Tuesday evening. In this article: Watch the Video, Read the Transcript, Listen to the podcast, and find tips on starting a program to help keep your community safer...


Published: 01/24/2023
Byline: SECO News

La Junta Police Neighborhood Watch Presentation Jan 24 2023

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La Junta Police Neighborhood Watch Outreach

Transcript: 

This is Adrian Hart with your Southeast Colorado News with the La Junta Police Department. We're meeting for Neighborhood watch. We're going to let officer Mitch take it away here. Hi. So we'd like to talk a little bit about the neighborhood Watch Program. I'm Sergeant Mitch Zgorzynski with the rest of our department here.

We'd just like to talk about the importance of this program in our community. We all are very invested in this program and what it does for our community, because we need you to help us do our jobs. We can't be everywhere at once. And so we rely on our community and the members of our community to tell us what's going on and report crimes or suspicious activity when they see it happening.

That's a big deal for us. Part of the program is we basically turn over oversight of the program to you. But to start a program in your neighborhood, it's really it's not that hard to do. It's basically, Organized neighborhood that comes together and reports crimes, talk about crime control and management of their neighborhood.

Has a phone tree, looks after each other when neighbors are on vacation or away from home at work and things like that. So it's really, it's nothing crazy. Thing that needs to be super, super organized. But basically it's getting you to get to know your neighbors and work together as a team to lower the crime rate in your community, and hopefully then the city as a whole.

This is Shirley Benz. She is a captain of one of our very first neighborhood watch groups in the city of La Junta. And she'd like to talk a little bit to you about what. To start a program. Hi. I started the first neighborhood watch back in probably around 2018 due to a lot of activity in our neighborhood that we really did not like.

People trying to get into our homes, breaking into homes. And our neighborhood is the neighborhood behind the Arkansas Valley Clinic, LA Clinic off a 10th in Topeka, off on 11th and 12th.  And so we all got together. . I got together with one of my other neighbors and we went door to door and collected everybody's numbers, phone numbers, and names for those two streets.

And then we got together with the police department and set up a meeting and had our first meeting, and that's all there is to it. It's not that hard. And we got to know each other. And I'm telling you, when the first time one of your neighbors, you think, I don't want people in my business, but when the first time a neighbor calls you and says, there's a person trying to get into your backyard, you really appreciate that neighbor then, and you want them in your business because that's what it's gonna take to keep the crimes outta your neighborhood along with the police department. And so then we started having our meetings.

We had a block party that was hilarious and the cops came and we just, had a really good time. You can do fun things like that. It's just, not all about a meeting. We help each other out. We watching our neighborhoods, our neighbors homes when they're on vacations and we just help out wherever we can.

And so it's not hard. The captain's job is not that hard. Don't be afraid of it. Someone's gotta volunteer to do it, and you'll just have a much peaceful neighborhood and you're, it'll just be a lot better for you. If you're interested in starting a program in your neighborhood please reach out to one of the supervisors here at the police department.

For the on duty supervisor, we'll get you the information that you need to succeed with creating that program. If you're interested but don't know if you want to be the leader, that's fine too. As long as you of talk to your neighbors, get some information together. And find out what the interest is there, we can provide that to you and talk about what it would take to be a leader in that role.

Get a neighbor assigned to that position. It doesn't just have to be you. So please don't hesitate to reach out to one of our supervisors to talk about that. And hopefully together we can reduce the crime in our city.

Contact the La Junta Police Department at (719) 384-2525

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The La Junta Police Department is Located at 601 Colorado Ave.