This week, I have received over half a dozen emails and phone calls from citizens who are upset and frustrated by the auto thefts, burgaries and theft from autos going on. I have heard, "I don't feel safe, my kids aren't safe, what is MPD doing about it?"
I just want you all to know, we share your frustration. There are lot of moving parts to this including our school system, our criminal justice system, our family support systems, and our resource providers all play a role in the juvenile crime.
We have identified a core group of about 30 kids who are committing a disproportionate amount of crime, who we are trying to do weekly home visits with, to make sure they and their families are receiving any needed resources.
When we have probable cause to charge a child with a crime we are doing so. Many of these kids are repeat offenders. We have charged out about 40 stolen auto cases this year. Any violent crimes are fully investigated and charged out as well.
We are repeatedly trying to get people lock their cars up, to keep valuables out of plain sight and to shut and lock their garage doors. The majority of the cases we investigate still involve unlocked cars and homes. Last Thursday night I was filling our vehicle report cards and I still found a number of unlocked cars parked on the street with valuables in plain view.
We are doing social media campaigns to try to reach more people, please help us reach your neighbors.
We are encouraging Good Neighbor type of programs so citizens can watch out for eachother's property.
Our officers are out actively patrolling neighborhoods at night trying to watch for suspicious people. We are trying, but we still need your help. We need you to be aware of what is going on in your neighborhood, we have a limited number of officers, we need you to help be our eyes. We need you to remind your neighborhors to lock it or lose it. Don't be afraid to remind a neighbor to shut their garage door. We need you to start a Good Neighbor program in your neighborhood. We need you to not leave your car unlocked and idling in your driveway or at the convienence store because it is cold.
Bottom line is that we are trying, but we need your help.