ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Albany City commissioners are working to fight crime in their districts and some are seeing success in the new year.
As a whole, the city of Albany is still experiencing crimes on a daily basis but some commissioners are crediting residents and the police department for helping cut down crime in their areas.
"I see crimes such as aggravated assault, larceny and other petty crimes decreasing," said Ward 1 Commissioner Jon Howard.
In a snapshot of crime statistics comparing the start of the 2018 year to the start of 2017, overall crime totals are about the same, but specific areas of the city, like Commissioner Howard's ward, are seeing a decrease in crimes.
In January of 2017, Albany police reported 90 incidents of major crimes in Ward 1. This January, that number dropped to 56.
"I attribute that to the police department being more vigilant in the community," said Howard.
Howard also said neighborhood watch groups, like the one on Sandalwood Drive, are stepping up their work.
"If they see a lot of suspicious foot traffic that is ingression in a neighborhood, they certainly will call the police department," explained Howard.
That's something Commissioner Roger Marietta said he's seeing in Ward 4 as well, which for January had the lowest number of reported crimes in the city.
"I think neighbors are watching neighbors," said Marietta.
Marietta said at neighborhood watch meetings his residents often discuss ways to prevent crimes from happening, like setting up security cameras and not leaving valuables in cars.
"The message I would like to say is let's keep up the good work, but don't let your guard down. If you see something suspicious, don't post it on the neighborhood watch, call 911 first," said Marietta.
Commissioners stressed the importance of 'see something, say something'. They said it helps you and your neighbors as well as the police department so they can catch the criminals in the act, not after.