APD looking for Neighborhood Watch volunteers

Published 1:50 am Saturday, October 6, 2018

The Andalusia Police Department is launching an effort to set up neighborhood watch programs in the hopes it will reduce local crime.

“The mayor and city council are on board with us starting this,” Chief Paul Hudson said. “The police department is not going to lead any of it, but we will be here to assist and guide the group in the right direction.”

Hudson said the idea is to set up different districts of the neighborhood watch program, according to the city’s five voting districts.

“The city is pretty big so we a Sren’t trying to centralize it,” Hudson said. “If we split up the group we can get a lot more work done.”

Communicating with the police department is the number one thing that Hudson wants the neighborhood watch groups to do.

“This is a way that the public can be connected with us,” Hudson said. “Any information that the public gives us is a tremendous help, so if we can communicate with the people of the city then they can help us solve a lot of these cases.”

Hudson hopes that with the formation of these neighborhood watch groups, the crime rate will be reduced.

“We really hope that we can reduce the crime rate by starting this,” Hudson said. “With the groups forming, they will be connected with us more and in turn that will help us solve more cases.”

Right now, Hudson only has plans for the neighborhood watches being in the city, but he has been in contact with the Sheriff-elect Blake Turman.

“Since there is a new sheriff, we will be working a lot with him and figuring some things out,” Hudson said. “Maybe once we establish the first groups then we can expand into the county, but right now it will just be the city.”

Hudson hopes to get the stone rolling in forming these groups as soon as possible.

“Hopefully we can get these started next month,” Hudson said. “We will have sign-up sheets in the police department for anyone interested. If a lot of people show interest then we can start sooner than next month.”

The Stolen In Covington County Facebook page is a way that the residents of Covington County can report stolen objects or crimes, and Hudson said that these groups can make a social media page as well.

“The Stolen In Covington County page has done some good things,” Hudson said. “I’m not opposed to our neighborhood watch groups having a Facebook page as well.”