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Dothan Neighborhood Stopping Crime

By: Erica Proffer Email
By: Erica Proffer Email

Neighbors looking out for neighbors; that's the mission of Crime Watch.

It took something bad before one neighborhood started coming together.

Jason Sell has lived in his home on Third Avenue for eight years.

He says he's never worried about crime, until one day, he says his security was taken away. "On April 4th, my house was broken into," he recalls.

And, that made Jason turn to his neighbors for help.

"It made me aware we need some kind of watch set up. The police can't always be here to watch our neighborhood, and if we help each other, we may be able to call police if we see suspicious activity. They may be able to catch them before the theft is done," says Sell.

Jason has a security system at his home, but he says it also takes the extra eye from his neighbors to really make him feel safe inside.

"In the event of crime, some of the closest witnesses will be neighbors. A lot of times, they may be something they don't think is relevant, but turns out to be very important," says Houston County Chief Deputy Don Valenza.

To set up a Neighborhood Crime Watch, the community has to agreed to watch out for each other, and to report suspicious activity to police and sheriff's deputies.

"Public apathy is one of the biggest problems we have. Nobody wants to get involved unless it pertains to them. We more or less unite the community to protect the area," says Valenza.

Jason hopes to soon end that public apathy in his neighborhood.

If you would like more information on how to set up a Neighborhood Crime Watch in your area, call the Houston County Sheriff's Office at 677-4888.


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