Recently, “community watch” in Laurinburg has translated to sitting idly by while crimes are committed.
But the Laurinburg Police Department is enlisting the help of local residents to change that and give the community an active role in protecting their neighborhoods.
“We’re hoping to get the community watch rejuvenated, starting at this point and working to other areas in the city so that each community has a little community watch group,” said police lieutenant Cliff Sessoms. “Participation has been sort of scarce, so we’re trying to get it restarted.”
The police department will hold a community watch information and interest meeting on Thursday at 6 p.m. at Freedom Temple Baptist Church at 500 Produce Market Road. When working to solve crimes, those who live near crime scenes provide key information to authorities.
“The people and the citizens of Laurinburg are how we get information and how we continue to solve crimes,” said interim Police Chief Kim Monroe. “Without people participating, it makes crime much more difficult to solve.”
Authorities hope to begin revitalizing community watch efforts in north Laurinburg due to a higher rate of violent crime in the area.
“Anyone in Laurinburg is welcome, but we especially want anyone from this area of town due to recent incidents we’ve had there,” said Sessoms. “Hopefully we’ll have a large crowd to attend.”
Police will also hold discussion of criminal activities and potential methods of decreasing crime.
“Hopefully this will give citizens and residents in the area a chance to communicate with the police and let the police know what their problems are and how we can effectively deal with them,” Monroe said. “It’s a way for the police department to connect with communities who are suffering from an increase in crime.”