By VANESSA WELCH
MT. VERNON — A new sign was unveiled during the second annual potluck for all Mt. Vernon and Jefferson County Neighborhood Watch groups.
“The main purpose of the sign is to get people aware of what Crime Watch is,” Sharon Martin, coordinator of Jefferson County Crime Watchers, said. “A lot of people in the county don’t know you can call in tips.”
Martin said a Crime Watch sign is currently located on 42nd Street, and the new display will be transported to meetings and other events around Jefferson County. The Mt. Vernon Township High School vocational department helped construct the sign, and Martin noted Tractor Supply Company donated resources as well.
During the annual meeting, eight Neighborhood Watch groups discussed how each find ways to create a safer community. Martin said groups that have been in existence for a longer amount of time pass ideas to newer groups such as Woodglen Acres which formed in August.
“This is for all the Crime Watch groups to get together and talk among themselves about different things they do,” Martin said. “They discuss problems, issues and how they can do things better.”
Upon receiving certificates of appreciation, many representatives of each group said the organization has caused a decrease in crime in their respective neighborhoods. Nate and Joan Tyler of Summersville said the organization reminds community members to check on one another.
“It’s put the community together and we watch out for one another,” Joan Tyler said. “People have turned in tips that have resulted in arrests.”
“At times people take turns to put signs on their cars and drive around to see if anything suspicious is going on,” Nate Tyler said.
Martin noted tips received by Crime Watch remain anonymous, and to provide leads you may call 242-8477. To find out more about the organization or to form a new group, contact Mt. Vernon Police Officer Ray Gilbert at 242-2131.
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