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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Police Developing Partnerships to Fight Crime

police officerThough the Phoenix Neighborhood Patrol Program has been around since 1994, the South Mountain community is working to be more involved in the program this year.


The Phoenix Neighborhood Patrol (PNP) is made up of residents of neighborhoods throughout the city of Phoenix.  The program is volunteer based and allows for residents to become more actively involved in crime prevention for their communities and are known as the “eyes and ears” for the Phoenix Police Department.


“We proactively patrol our own neighborhood and partner together with other PNP’s and patrol each other’s,” said Ron Tweedy, who is the civilian coordinator for the South Mountain Precinct PNP.


The South Mountain Crime Precinct recently held a summit at the South Mountain Library where members from the community came to share concerns with their local action officer.  The ultimate goal is for the officers to learn what is going on in the community, what they need to focus on and how they can better patrol the neighborhoods.


“What we’re trying to develop here is a partnership and gather info that needs to be reported and that starts with you guys,” said Chris Granado, a community action officer for the South Mountain Precinct.


As members spoke up about issues going on in their neighborhoods, one of the common themes throughout the discussion is that they felt there was not a very strong police presence.  They expressed that they would like for police to do more patrols on the streets.


“The one thing I know about crime is that you have to be aggressive and I’ve lived in South Phoenix all my life and have seen the evolution, but with the dwindling budgets cuts the police department has gone through makes it even more important for programs like these to exist,” said Frank Moore, who attended the summit.


At the summit it was shared that due to budget cuts it has become more difficult for police to patrol neighborhoods for suspicious behavior when also trying to balance calls and reports that they receive.


“The officers in our community have gone down to four to five from 10 and have a lot to do, which can become very exhausting and this is why it’s important to help,” said Tweedy.


The police officers are also big advocates for the program and encourage residents to start a PNP in their own neighborhood.


“With PNP’s you have people that are genuinely concerned and want to make their community a safe place,” said Benjamin Morris, one of the action officers for the South Mountain Precinct.


The PNPs in Phoenix help with trying to prevent crime from happening in their neighborhoods by reporting to police officers when coming across things that they see might be unusual.


“With the calls that we have received from PNPs they have been very helpful and have helped us on working to prevent crime in their neighborhoods and also by making us aware of what areas need to have more focus on,” said Officer Granado.


People who attended the summit left in agreement that having more PNPs throughout the South Mountain community would not only be beneficial for them, but also for the police department.




By Madeline Valencia





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