It's been a while since I wrote an article for the neighborhood and, with the recent theft of wheels, I figured now would be a good time to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard). First let me start off by saying that crime is NOT out of control in Devonshire. I have seen some posts and even emails to the chief of police and the city councilwoman asking for help because there have been robberies and all kinds of other bad stuff happening in Devonshire. That is not true. Although one crime is too many in my eyes, we have only had seven true, legitimate offenses this year and they have all been property crimes.
The recent overnight theft of tires and rims from four houses in Devonshire is the most offenses in one night in the 19 years I have been working the neighborhood. We know a little about the suspect's actions and how quick they are when committing these offenses. They work in teams of 4-5 with two hydraulic jacks. The whole car goes up at once and one suspect goes to work on one tire each. Even with locking lug nuts, it is as fast as a NASCAR pit stop. They have been taking the pave stones from a house in the neighborhood so we are simply taking them back. The nice homeowner is looking to cement the pave stones down so they can't be taken.
So what are we, as your neighborhood police officers, doing to combat this trend? We have been authorized to work extra hours over the holiday weekend with an officer working the overnight hours looking for pretty much any vehicles on the roads in the early morning hours.
So what can y'all, as homeowners, do to combat this trend? I would ask that each of you go to the neighbor on either side of you and ask if they are members. If they are not, pressure them into joining. Currently, the budget only allows us to work 190 hours a month. That leaves 550+ hours with no officer presence.
I have asked on-duty patrol officers to provide some patrols in the area but they say they are having to go from call to call to call and none of them are in Devonshire. They did say if/when call load permits, they would provide some officer presence in the area.
Rest assured, every off-duty officer that works for you is aware of the recent events and are on high alert for suspicious vehicles/activity. You be too!
K E V I N ‘ S K O R N E R
As I sit down and put pen to paper for this edition of
Kevin’s Korner, too many issues and topics come to mind for just one
Korner. Therefore, I am going to scatter
shoot the topics:
There are so many lucky dogs in Devonshire that have owners
willing to walk them or take them up to the dog park (an awesome addition to
the neighborhood may I add!). Unfortunately there are a few dog owners that are
unaware of the city ordinances on walking in the streets and walking dogs
without a leash. If a side walk is
provided on either side of the street, ALL pedestrians (and dogs) must use the
sidewalk. The city ordinance further
states that an owner of an animal commits an offense if he fails to restrain
the animal at all times in a fenced yard, and enclosed pen or by a tether or
leash. Should a person violate either of these ordinances they could be issued a
citation. That goes for pushing
strollers too. Please use the sidewalks
Yes, they still see Devonshire as a target rich
environment. Please continue to call the
hot line or 911 whenever there is an aggressive solicitor at your door. It is better to be safe than sorry. They may not solicit after sunset, or at
houses with a “no solicitors” sign posted.
With all the construction in the neighborhood, comes more
large construction trucks. There is only
so much room on the streets without blocking private driveways. If you see any vehicles blocking a private
drive please call the hotline or call 911 if no answer. This is a safety issue
for someone who may need to get out of their driveway quickly for medical
reason. This is an issue that is
continuing to get worse. We need to put
a stop to it with a visit to the job site managers.
Recently a homeowner returned home to find a group of kids
leaving the front of a house at a high rate of speed. They did the right thing and called the
hotline immediately which was quickly answered by the off-duty officer. He was there in less than one minute to
confirm that no offense had been committed.
The kids may have been friends of the son that lived at the house. The
reason I bring this up is because this is one of the main reasons to have a
neighborhood patrol, a quick response!
Had the homeowner not got the officer and called 911, it could have
taken up to 30 minutes for an on-duty officer to arrive.
The above mentioned quick response should start occurring
more and more thanks to the generosity of an anonymous homeowner. The homeowner will match any monetary
contributions by other homeowners over their allotted dues. He will also match new members and even those
behind on their dues. This will allow
for additional hours of patrol. So, if you want to see your money double,
contribute an amount and the homeowner will match it.
The biggest challenge during the holiday season for us
officers is keeping packages left on front porches from walking off. Each December we search out the local
delivery drivers and ask/beg them to try to conceal packages left at front
doors as best as possible; unfortunately that often falls on deaf ears. If you know you are expecting a package
please have it delivered to a neighbor that you know will be home or have a
neighbor keep an eye on your porch.
The benefits of living in Devonshire are many, but they all
start with participation. Continue to
encourage your neighbors to join, join if you haven’t and continue to look out
for each other.