Neighborhood Watch

 

Neighborhood Watch

“The eyes and ears of law enforcement”

Mesa Verde State Streets

October 2, 2017

 

Our initial meeting was last night and well attended. We estimate over 40 people came to hear the Costa Mesa PD Public Affairs Manager Roxi Fyad speak about crime prevention. She opened up by introducing herself with a little bit of her career history, starting her career as a 2nd responder, then she worked as the spokeswoman for the District Attorney’s office for 9 years and is now the with the CMPD. She has been trained on crime prevention.

Roxi gave the history on Neighborhood Watch, and how the community and the local police department can team up to prevent criminal activity. She explained the history of the last 3 months for our neighborhood and stated that we have had 35 burglary calls in 3 months, and many calls for the Vagabond Inn.

Costa Mesa is divided into 2 areas. 6 officers are on patrol at a time in our area which is Area 2. There are 119 sworn in officers on the force at this time but that number should be going up.

She placed importance on always locking up your home and vehicles to lower the opportunities for these crimes to be committed, as well as installing flood lights, RING doorbells, keeping your porch light on at night, and cameras that can view license plates and have great picture quality to be able to see faces clearly. Taking these precautions will slow down the opportunity for the crime to happen. Another point Roxi made was that we need to keep anything that looks valuable out of sight, when inside our vehicles. Even having mail on the front seat can be a lure for them to think that maybe one of those envelopes might have a credit card or check inside.

Officer J. Korte arrived and reiterated a lot of what Roxi had said. He has been with CMPD for the last 3 years and was with Redondo PD before joining up with CMPD. Many of the neighbors that attended gave personal stories of what they have experienced, and Officer Korte explained that there are a number of reasons which these individuals are in our neighborhoods. Starting with Prop. 47, which means many people who have committed crimes have short custody lengths, along with the individuals who come to Costa Mesa to seek help for their substance abuse issues who are placed back on the streets. These individuals become homeless in our area. The suggested long term fix was – People need to step up to be leaders, starting at the city level then county and state. Coming out to vote for what is important to us is also a step in the right direction.

Officer Korte said it is legal to take pictures of these individuals if they are out in a public place. Every situation is different, and some of these individuals who are causing issues in our neighborhood can be dangerous, so it is advised to always be safe and to call the police.

Knowing who your neighbors are is important. If you see anybody that look suspect or out of place, it is highly recommended to call the CMPD. One of the things that the officers hear a lot is that people don’t call because they don’t want to bother the police. But when we don’t call, the police will not know that there is an issue in that area. Roxi also stated that she really likes Nextdoor.com, and CMPD are planning on establishing an account in the near future. CMPD is already on Facebook and Twitter. A website that Roxi suggested was Nixle.com, which keeps you up-to-date with relevant information from your local public safety departments & schools. All you have to do is log in to nixle.com and type in your zip code, or text your zip code to 888777 to opt-in. There is also a Manual for Neighborhood Watch if you have any questions about how to be a part of one in your area.

Here is the link: https://www.costamesaca.gov/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=25236

The City of Costa Mesa is in the midst of looking for a crime analyst to hire to give us a picture of all the crimes happening in Costa Mesa.

We are the eyes and ears of our area, and the police cannot see everything. They will only know there is an issue if we call and report. When the crowd was asked if they had been affected by the crime issues in our area, about 90% raised their hands.

A good question asked was: “What is a good way to approach a criminal?”

Answer: If you see someone that is dangerous, do not put yourself in danger. If they have something in their hand, do not approach them. Just call the police and be ready to describe the appearance of the individual in question.

By locking up our vehicles and homes every time, we will help slow down the situation, and the criminals will have less reason to return. One of the neighbors suggested gathering funds from interested Mesa Verde residents to install a high tech camera in the neighborhood. It would require approval from the City in order to place that camera on any city property so Roxi asked this neighbor to email her, and maybe that is something that they can look into.

I hope that this gives us neighbors a better idea of what is happening here in Mesa Verde and Costa Mesa. We will reach out again soon to give you all an update of our areas neighborhood watch team. Thanks to Roxi Fyad and Officer Korte for coming out and informing us, John and Cindy Leffler for putting this together and to all the neighbors who attended the meeting.

 

Respectfully submitted by,
Virginia Vargas

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