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Many residents living in the Charlotte-Metro area have concerns about the risk of crime in their neighborhoods. Now more than ever, it is imperative that Charlotte’s citizens work together to eradicate crime from within our communities. Crime In Charlotte (.com) has compiled a list of ways to reduce the risk of your home or community becoming the target of a crime.

It is very difficult for crime to attack a neighborhood that is both aware and inter-connected. An effective community watch program that wants to make an area safer needs to have an organizer or leader. Community involvement is crucial to the success of any crime prevention program. This is because when community members are involved with each other, they know who their neighbors are, the normal neighborhood routine, and they know when something is wrong.

A neighborhood watch program is a great was to prevent crime. The program is effective because it unites your community under a common objective: the safety and security everyone. Working in cooperation with law enforcement to keep watch over the neighborhood is the key to any successful neighborhood watch. A community watch can provide its members with skills and experience in reporting crime and suspicious activity. If you are interested in starting a neighborhood watch program in your community, the first step is to contact your local police department.

If you live in Mecklenburg County, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has provided a valuable resource. CMPD’s Crime Prevention Unit has established an official Neighborhood Watch Program. Click here to access their official document, which contains useful information on how to start a program in your area and the proper forms to submit to your local district police office. There is also a request form to purchase neighborhood watch signs for your community. If you’re not sure which district or response area you’re a part of, click here to access our interactive Mecklenburg County Crime Division Map. There you will find the contact information of your district office by clicking on your district.

Community patrols have been proven to be effective at preventing crime, especially in areas where the presence of police may be limited. Community patrols are made up of unarmed resident volunteers who agree to cruise through the community, ready to alert law enforcement if needed. An important aspect of this strategy is the training that these volunteers receive.

Whether you decide to initiate a neighborhood watch program or take it a step further by organizing a community patrol, it is crucial to remember that engaging suspects is the job of law enforcement. No member of a neighborhood watch or community patrol should ever try to stop or otherwise deter a suspicious person. It is the job of concerned citizens to report suspicious activity to police immediately.

After you have a crime prevention program in place, posting signs that warn of your neighborhood watch or other security measure can help keep crime down even further. These warn potential violators that your community will not tolerate crime and present an unattractive target for criminals.

Finally, dark and shadowy regions are a safe haven for criminals of all kinds. One of the first steps to making your community safer is to ensure proper lighting. This will make it easier for your neighbors to detect and report suspicious happenings in your community. We hope that you will utilize the information and references in our Community section to enhance the crime prevention efforts being made where you live.

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