Neighborhood Watch is a crime prevention program that stresses education and common sense. It teaches citizens how to help themselves by identifying and reporting suspicious activity in their neighborhoods. Neighborhood Watch groups typically focus on observation and awareness as a means of preventing crime and employ strategies that range from simply promoting social interaction and “watching out for each other” to active patrols by groups of citizens.
Starting a Group
Currently we have several neighborhood watch groups in Cole County. If
you would like information on creating a watch group with your neighbors
contact the Sheriff’s Office at 573-634-9160.
Most neighborhood crime prevention groups are organized around a block or a neighborhood and are started with assistance from a law enforcement agency. Volunteers who donate their time and resources are typically at the center of such programs, since many do not have a formal budget or source of funding
All Neighborhood Watches share 1 fundamental idea: bringing community members together to reestablish control of their neighborhoods promotes an increased quality of life and reduces the crime rate in that area. The reason for this effectiveness is rather simple: Involving community members in watch programs decreases opportunities for criminals to commit crime rather than attempting to change their behavior or motivation.
Today’s Neighborhood Watch Program is an effective means of crime control and neighborhood cohesiveness. While not all of the programs in place today go by the same name, they all accomplish the same goal: to bring community members together to fight crime.