Residents are taking back the streets

Published 9:56 am Wednesday, May 9, 2018

By Dawn Burleigh

The Orange Leader

Neighborhood Watch, around since colonial times, is one of the oldest and most effective crime prevention programs in the country, bringing citizens together with law enforcement to deter crime and make communities safer, according to National Crime Prevention Council.

After a female pastor in Orange suffered racial harassment, stalking, attempted breaking and entering and repeated death threats that lead to her removal and relocation.

She did not suffer from physical harm but was under emotional and mental stress, according to a press release.

Orange Branch NAACP of Orange Texas is hosting a community meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday at West Orange – Cove Administration Building is located at 902 West Park Ave. in Orange.

“This is not about joining the NAACP,” Pastor Demetrius Moffett said. “This is about being proactive and addressing the community.”

Moffett is the president of the local NAACP.

“What if this was your wife? Your daughter?” Moffett asked. “A pastor had to reassigned because she did not feel safe.”

According to the press release: ‘This community meeting is being held to provide additional opportunities for our community to join together, get involved as we look to take back the streets of our community. We are looking to start up a new program for concerned citizens to form a network to reduce crime. Our police department is limited in number and might not see the crimes occurring. As citizens of Orange let’s take responsibility to report crimes when we see them.

Neighborhood Watch is a crime prevention program that enlists the active participation of residents in cooperation with law enforcement to reduce crime, solve problems and improve the quality of life in your area.’

The modern version of Neighborhood Watch was developed in response to requests from sheriffs and police chiefs who were looking for a crime prevention program that would involve citizens and address an increasing number of burglaries.

Launched in 1972, Neighborhood Watch counts on citizens to organize themselves and work with law enforcement to keep a trained eye and ear on their communities, while demonstrating their presence at all times of day and night.

The duty is to ask neighbors to be alert, observant, and caring—and to report suspicious activity or crimes immediately to the police.