Event aims to cut crime in Truckee | SierraSun.com

Event aims to cut crime in Truckee

Preventing crime in Truckee can be as easy as turning on a porch light.

That’s part of the message Truckee Police are trying to convey at tonight’s 25th annual National Night Out, an event designed to promote neighborhood crime watch and foster cooperation between police and the community, said Truckee Police Chief Scott Berry.

“We need the eyes and ears of the citizens to help reduce crime,” Berry said.

Truckee’s crime rate may be small when compared with larger communities, but offenses like burglary, vandalism and traffic violations continue to pose a problem in the area, Berry said.

“Graffiti is definitely increasing,” Berry said. “We did make an arrest last week, but we could use some help from citizens.”

With the help of witnesses, Truckee Police were able to locate, interview and subsequently arrest three juveniles on July 22 for a felony vandalism crime, with damage exceeding $2,000, said Sgt. Robert Womack.

The police department has implemented some anti-crime programs such as administering radar checks and speed surveys, conducting public forums to discuss community concerns and operating vacation patrols when full-time residents are out of town, Berry said.

And while the department has made attempts to install and encourage neighborhood watch groups, the program hasn’t fully developed, said Sheri Whinery, community services officer.

“It’s important that people get to know their neighbors ” it’s the biggest tool in crime prevention,” Whinery said.

This year more than 11,000 communities nationwide are expected to join forces for the crime awareness event, and Truckee Police are aiming for participation from all Truckee neighborhoods, Whinery said.

Residents can partake by turning on porch lights or by attending a kick-off party at the Glenshire Clubhouse, Whinery said.

Food, raffles and free fingerprinting will be provided at tonight’s gathering, and the event also gives community members a chance to mingle with those who work to take a bite out of crime, Berry said.

“It all ties into community policing,” Berry said. “We want to interact with the

community. If people have any issues, concerns or questions, this is a time they can bring them up.”

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