NORTH MIAMI BEACH (CBS4) – A new kind crime-fighting tool is coming to North Miami Beach neighborhoods. It’s designed to create a partnership between neighbors and police.
“Traditionally when we try to reach out to the community through crime watch groups we expect them to either come to us or form their own group. We see that’s not working in society today,” said Tom Carney, Director of Police Services for North Miami Beach.
Instead, police are going into the neighborhoods. The program known as PACT stands for Police and Community Together.
Police are hosting meetings in van converted to a mobile resource center. They are making people aware of crimes in their neighborhoods and what they can do to protect themselves.
Police analysts determine which neighborhoods are seeing crime trends and that’s where the van goes. Tuesday night, the first meeting took place in a neighborhood where police say they’re seeing a lot of home burglaries.
Francine Salmon attended.
“We need to protect our neighborhood we work hard for the things in our home and we need to protect our home we need to protect our children and we want to have a good community,” she said.
Her neighbor, Josephine Simunek said, “I’ve lived in this neighborhood 48 years in the same house and I feel even better tonight that they’re aware that we do need protection.”
Police also encourage neighbors to let them know about anything suspicious going on and to tell them any concerns.
“We can’t do this alone. Every police department is hurting in terms of budgets and personnel,” said Carney. “We need the community to help us out and partner with us.”