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North Syracuse police focus on neighborhoods, crosswalks

Efforts to reinvigorate the village of North Syracuse Neighborhood Watch Program are underway. The police consider the program a part of their focus on community policing. Interested residents can call the department at 458-5670.

Efforts to reinvigorate the village of North Syracuse Neighborhood Watch Program are underway. The police consider the program a part of their focus on community policing. Interested residents can call the department at 458-5670. Matthew Liptak

— Mitchell said there are currently about 120 neighborhood watch groups in the county, and 80 percent are active. He advised incorporating businesses into the watch program. That's what the village of East Syracuse did under a former mayor, he said, and it had considerable success. North Syracuse could emulate them, he suggested.

“It's not going to take much,” Mitchell said. “It's just a matter of getting people together. It only takes a couple people. I don't care if we're talking one person or 20 people, to tell you the truth, because that one person can go to two, two can go to four and four can go to eight. It's just a matter of getting somebody that wants to take charge and say 'Hey, yes, we can really use this. We need to embrace the principles again.”

The village police advise those interested to get involved by calling the station at 458-5670.

Those keeping an eye out may spot an officer on foot patrol on Main Street soon. It is a part of the community policing effort and centers on getting drivers going up and down that road to slow down for pedestrians at crosswalks.

“I'm going to look at what resources we have available,” Peverly said. “If we can do it —if we have the staffing that we can do this — I would like to put an officer on foot patrol in the central core of the village and have him patrol that area and deal with the pedestrian crosswalks. The problem is the motorists are not stopping for [pedestrians]. People have to wait for the traffic to clear before crossing and that is not what the crosswalk is there for. The crosswalk is there so the traffic stops and yields the right of way to the pedestrians in the crosswalk. That's not occurring.”

The department is also considering putting up a sign that shows the speed of drivers going down the street in the hopes that they will slow down and respect the crosswalks. If that's not successful, the department will resort to warnings and ultimately citations.

“One way or another we are going to move forward with addressing the issue of making the crosswalk a safe crossing area for pedestrians,” Peverly said.

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