What Is Neighborhood Watch?
The Neighborhood Watch program is a way for neighbors to get together and become involved in helping keep Bellaire Safe. The basic components of Neighborhood Watch are:
- Neighbors organizing into groups.
- Police working with organized groups to educate citizens on crime prevention tactics such as recognizing suspicious activity, learning how to secure your home, learning how to be safe in public places, and so on.
- Neighbors knowing each other and watching out for each other.
- Neighbors reporting suspicious activity to police immediately.
- Development of communication systems between the Police Department and neighbors that allow for a more timely exchange of information.
What Are The Limitations on Neighborhood Watch?
- It is not a vigilante force or an organization that works outside the structure of the Bellaire Police Department.
- It is not a program where members take personal risk to deter crime. Members report crimes in progress, they never intervene.
- A program that guarantees that crime will never happen in your neighborhood.
What Would Be Expected of You?
Participants are asked to:
- Attend an informational meeting, meet our neighbors, and learn how to improve the security of your family, home, and property.
- Register online at the site discussed during the start-up meeting.
- Participate in regular meetings with your neighbors and the police department.
- Most of all, report suspicious activity or criminal activity you may observe.
How Can I Find Out About Crime In My Neighborhood?
Go to Bellaire Police Department website and on the left hand side you will see a pull down menu. You can research crime under the tabs Crime Profiles, Crime Maps, or Crime Call Search.
What About Neighborhood Watch Signs?
Active Neighborhood Watch neighborhoods have signs advertising participation at the entrances to the neighborhood. The signs alone do not deter criminals; it is only by maintaining an active network of neighbors that the Neighborhood Watch programs works.
The signs show that the neighborhood actively participates in Neighborhood Watch and will report suspicious activity. Additionally, it reminds people in the neighborhood that they are encouraged to report suspicious activity. On the left is the traditional Neighborhood Watch sign that has been used in the past.
What Is The Next Step?
The next steps are pretty straight forward:
- Determine interest on your block, street, or neighborhood. We do not intend to have as strict requirements on group size as some of the national programs recommend, but we will need a representative percentage of an area being organized. The Bellaire Police Department is willing to start with smaller groups and expand.
- Identify a person that is willing to serve as a contact person for your group.
- The group's contact person will then call Officer J.W. Edwards at 713-662-8103 or contact him via email at email@example.com to discuss the program. A start-up meeting will be scheduled where the program is reviewed in greater detail.
We look forward to hearing from you and your neighbors!