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Neighborhood Watch

Overview

The Pima County Sheriff's Department embraces the Neighborhood Watch program philosophies of keeping citizens involved in keeping their own communities safe by being active and aware. In 1984, the Sheriff's Auxiliary Volunteers spearheaded Pima County's Neighborhood Watch efforts. Since then Neighborhood Watch programs can be found all over the county, from rural neighborhoods to new developments.

If you are interested in finding out about what a Neighborhood Watch program can do for your neighborhood, contact the SAVs, who will be happy to assist in starting a localized program or provide support for an existing group. The Sheriff's Auxiliary Volunteers are available at (520) 351-4972.

History

Neighborhood Watch is one of the oldest and most effective crime prevention programs in the country, bringing citizens together with law enforcement to deter crime and make communities safer.

Sponsored by the National Sheriffs' Association (NSA), Neighborhood Watch can trace its roots back to the days of colonial settlements, when night watchmen patrolled the streets. The modern version of Neighborhood Watch was developed in response to requests from sheriffs and police chiefs who were looking for a crime prevention program that would involve citizens and address an increasing number of burglaries.

Launched in 1972, Neighborhood Watch counts on citizens to organize themselves and work with law enforcement to keep a trained eye and ear on their communities, while demonstrating their presence at all times of day and night. (The program took off quickly: in just ten years, NSA data showed that 12 percent of the population was involved in a Neighborhood Watch.) Neighborhood Watch works because it reduces opportunities for crime to occur; it doesn't rely on altering or changing the criminal's behavior or motivation.


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