SPOKANE, Wash. - The warm weather means people are out and about enjoying the sun, but it also means easier access into homes for potential thieves. With more windows and doors open and people spending time outside, law enforcement is encouraging neighbors to look out for one another and set up a neighborhood block watch.
In addition to setting up an official watch, there are things neighbors can do to keep an eye out for one another. First, get to know your neighbors. Know who lives in the house and get an idea of when they come and go. Second, share email and phone numbers. Group emails serve as a great way to communicate between each family on the block or street. Third, tell a trusted neighbor when you plan on leaving town for a few days. That way, they can keep an eye out on your home. Fourth, remember it never hurts to call a neighbor and confirm what you're seeing. For example, if a vehicle you don't recognize is parked in a neighbor's driveway while they're out of town, give your neighbor a call to confirm that vehicle is supposed to be there. Finally, remember that a neighborhood watch does not mean you should take matters into your own hands when a crime is taking place. Law enforcement still wants you to call 911 if you see a crime in progress. Call the non-emergency number if you want to report a crime that has already taken place.
Local law enforcement can offer help in setting up an official block watch. If you live in the City of Spokane, contact the nearest C.O.P.S. office. In Spokane County, you can call 509-477-3055 to start a block watch. In Coeur d'Alene, you can call 208-769-2320.