Prevent crime - form a block watch in time for National Night Out

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Updated 7-24-2012 11:43pm
Neighbors get to know each other over dinner in the street
at a Shoreline block watch potluck
Photo by Diane Hettrick

By the time you find out there is crime on your street, it may be too late to protect yourself. "The best offense is a good defense" and the best defense you can have is your neighbors. Retired police captain, current police consultant, and Shoreline Police volunteer Steve Robinson provides this information about block watches.

By Steven H. Robinson

The City of Shoreline and Shoreline Police provide many services related to crime prevention and information about what crimes are reported in your neighborhood.

You may not even know if this is a problem where you live. The Shoreline Police has some tools for you to determine the level of property crimes and other types of crimes in your neighborhood. They also provide the opportunities for neighborhoods to form Block Watches.

An organized and active Block Watch group is the single most important feature that will help you reduce crime in your neighborhood. A Block Watch is formed by a group of neighbors who are interested in mutual protection against burglary and other neighborhood crime. These neighbors agree to watch out for one another's homes and report unusual incidents to the police.

Since 1974, many residents have been actively and successfully working to reduce burglary in their neighborhoods. The many hundreds of Neighborhood Block Watch Groups have worked together to prevent the increasing crimes of burglary, auto theft and prowls and vandalism.

Knowing where and what types of crimes occur in your neighborhood can help your crime prevention efforts. Shoreline Police provide monthly crime maps indicating the most common property crimes in Shoreline.

Also included in the maps are incidents of robbery (crimes against persons). The maps are created by the Centralized Crime Analysis Research, Planning and Information Services Unit of the King County Sheriff’s Office. Click on this link to download them or visit one of the Shoreline Police Neighborhood Centers or main station to pick up a paper copy.

Block Watches and home security

For more information click on the links below: 
Contact the neighborhood officers for help getting started:
  • Officer Greg McKinney, 521 NE 165th St., Shoreline, WA 98155, 206-363-8424
  • Officer Leona Obstler, 624 NW Richmond Beach Rd., Shoreline, WA 98177, 206-546-3636

Do you want to find out where the crime in your neighborhood is? 

This information is also available through a new partnership between Shoreline Police, the King County Sheriff’s Office, and CrimeReports®, creators of the National Crime Map, at the Crime Reports website.

Shoreline Police agree that this service provides reliable, timely information and can assist in keeping the public informed about what is going on in the community. They encourage the community to use the information to help in crime prevention efforts in their neighborhoods.

The crime map is accessible 24 hours a day via the website and even lets local citizens sign up for free customizable email alerts. There is no cost to Shoreline residents for this service.

You can access your local crime map and sign up for daily, weekly, or monthly email crime alerts here. Map information is available for Lake Forest Park and Kenmore as well as Shoreline.

In Lake Forest Park, contact the police department for block watch information. Information links from Lake Forest Park Police: 

Tuesday, August 7, is National Night Out Against Crime - a perfect opportunity to gather your neighbors for a potluck dinner and information about forming a block watch on your street.

Contact your police department for assistance.


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