Neighborhood Park Watch

Lebanon Police Department

In a community partnership similar to Neighborhood Watch, teams are trained to be the eyes and ears for the police department and report suspicious circumstances to the police.

Policing

Chronic Nuisance

Homeless

Transients

Quality of Life

Problem Icon Problem

PROBLEMATIC BEHAVIOR OR ACTIVITY

Neighborhood parks were being vandalized and destroyed by homeless people and others.

IMPACT ON THE COMMUNITY

In addition to the financial impact of damage to the parks, the public was afraid to use the parks because the offenders were intimidating, harassing, and threatening. The public did not feel safe for themselves or their children.

Within six months, the number of incidents increased greatly at neighborhood parks. For instance, Ralston Park went from 2 incidents in January to 31 in June 2015; River Park went from 6 incidents in January to 23 in June of 2015.

Solution Icon Solution

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Park Watch operates like Neighborhood Watch. There are captains for each park and teams are trained to be the eyes and ears for the police department and report suspicious circumstances to the police. We are in the beginning stages of this program at this time.

BASED ON RESEARCH

It is based on National Neighborhood Watch Programs.

FUNDING

Costs included the staff time needed to put the program together and implement it. The community is helping to absorb the cost by sponsoring the shirts, etc., needed to advertise the program.

Outcome Icon Outcome

PROGRAM IMPACT

This program has started to send a message to those who are coming into our parks that such behavior will not be tolerated.

CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTORS

Community involvement and partnership are key to this program being successful.

LESSONS LEARNED

This appears to be a rarity in law enforcement to have a structured program like this. It’s a great buy-in for the community and for police partnerships.