Albany- A neighborhood unites against violence and encourages others to do the same. Frightening holdups in the Lake Park area last month spurred neighbors to take action. They say they won't live in fear, but they will watch out for each other. The watch group says it's simple and something any neighborhood can do and they're encouraging others to start neighborhood patrols in an effort to cut crime in their backyards. The group asked to only be identified by their first names.
"First thing on the clock will be the perimeter patrol, that will be Randy and Trip, going in opposite directions," said Greg, watch leader.
It starts out with a briefing. "We'll see you back here in about 45 minutes, let's roll," said Greg.
The first patrol of the night begins, five men with flashers on, and eyes open. Neighbors in Lake Park are working with the police to keep their neighborhood safe. It's as simple as an Ooda Loop.
"It's a military term is means observe, orientate, decide and act," said Greg.
As simple as it seem it may be preventing more attacks like the armed robberies just weeks ago.
"Just this past week, one of our patrols was out and saw a vehicle moving very slowly in an alley, he passed the car in the alley and turned around and tried to get the license plate number and the thing took off," said Greg.
As they drive they check dark alleys, listen to scanners and check in. The first defense starts at home. The watch group encourages homeowners to light their yards.
"There's a good example there, he's got a spotlight with his Christmas lights, when Christmas is over with hopefully he'll keep his lights out," said Greg.
They say these acts of violence united Lake Park neighbors, who won't stand to see another neighbor frightened.
"We are a neighborhood, we need to take care of eachother," Greg.
The Lake Park neighborhood patrol organized by getting e-mail addresses and then meeting to coordinate a scheduled.
More than 70 residents signed up to patrol the neighborhood. The patrols are conducted nightly. Police have still not charged anyone with the armed robberies, though two suspects are charged with stealing a car used in the robberies.
Lake Park residents raised more than $4,500 in reward money.