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East Albany Resident Ready to Fight Crime

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November 12, 2007

Albany - - Neighborhood Watches are thriving in many parts of Albany. But a similar program that covers a wider area and encourages police to work closely with civilians isn't having much success. Some folks in east Albany want to change that. They want to take back their neighborhoods by reviving the Community Policing Program.

Parts of East Albany are hotbeds for crime. Everyone from residents to city commissioners have tried to get rid of the drugs and gangs.

When it comes to crime in East Albany, people who live there say they were here first. That's why they're organizing against the criminals to take back their neighborhood.

Charlotte Atteberry is the face behind the movement.

"Citizens can see a lot of things that get hidden from the police officers," she says.

So she's revitalizing the Community Policing Program, which seemed to lose interest just a couple of months after it started last year.

"People say 'well I'm afraid they'll come after me', but the more of us there are, we'll outnumber them."

She took that message to Albany's police chief.

"Oh I absolutely support it," Chief James Younger says.

He says she's on the right track and encourages his officers to take part.

"We do expect officers to come out and attend the meetings and hopefully we'll have officers attending all of the neighborhood watch meetings," Younger says.

The group would be the eyes and ears of their community. It would meet each month to share what they see with cops.

"Are you confident this will get going again?" we asked Atteberry.

"Yes, I really am," she says.

Because she has officers support and personal motivation to live peacefully.

"Citizens together can outnumber the criminals. We can wipe it out."

With of course, the help of those who are paid to do it. 

Atteberry was motivated to re-start the program after competing APD's Citizens Police Academy. She says anyone is welcome at their meetings. The next one will be held at the Community Policing Center on East Ogelthorpe on December 6th at 6:30.

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