Community watch program in Washington has doubled participants since last year

WASHINGTON, N.C. (WNCT)- The community watch program in Washington has more than doubled its participants from last year. In 2014, the city of Washington had six neighborhoods participating in their community watch program, now a year later there are 13 neighborhoods signed up. The program has done more than just prevent crime, it allows neighbors to get to know each other.

Participant, Betty Cochran, said, “you might say that we all have each other’s backs, when we’re going to be away we notify our neighbors, when there’s sickness we take things to the door.”

Officer Chris Hobbs with the Washington Police Department says people might be reluctant to sign up for the program because they think someone else will do it, but officers can’t be everywhere.

“Any help that we can get from the community and information as far as break ins, property crime helps us out as far as response time,” Officer Hobbs said.

The immediate purpose of the community watch program is to prevent crime, but Kimberly Grimes with the Washington Police Department thinks this helps build relationships as well.

“With so much negativity in the news in regard to police officers, I am glad to see what we are doing,” Grimes said.

Officer Hobbs believes this program has helped decrease crime in the area.

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