Here are some commonly needed contact numbers for SPD:
SPD Police Headquarters:
Office of Professional Standards:
What is a Police Chaplain?
A law enforcement chaplain is a member of the clergy with a passionate interest in, and the specialized training for pastoral care in the dangerous world of law enforcement. This pastoral care is offered to all people regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, creed, or religion. The services are offered without cost or proselytizing.
The law enforcement chaplain is led in his or her own faith to be available and ready to serve those in need. The chaplain’s ministry provides a source of strength to the law enforcement officers and their families, other department members, the community, and the incarcerated.
One of the duties of a SPD Chaplain is to provide counseling to officers, their families, and other law enforcement employees. The chaplain may do this simply by providing a sympathetic ear to an officer who has experienced a traumatic incident, such as a motor vehicle crash, a shooting, or even a non-police-related death in the family. Officers experiencing marital problems can also turn to their chaplain for guidance. Essentially, the chaplain is there to provide a friendly and easily accessible resource that can help officers and their families get past their personal or spiritual difficulties.
SPD Chaplains may be called upon to provided mediation in a crisis situation. A barricaded person, a potential suicide or a hostage taker may not wish to speak to police officers but may be willing to speak to a chaplain from their particular religion. In a situation like this, a chaplain would be called in to communicate with the individual directly to try to defuse the situation in a safe manner.
Visit Sick or Injured Officers and their Families
An officer’s life can be incredibly stressful. It becomes much more stressful when the officer or a family member is ill or seriously injured. A chaplain also provides a measure of support by visiting sick or injured officers or by an officer’s sick family member.
SPD officers are often called upon to notify families of death due to suicide, fatal crashes, or criminal acts. When possible, a SPD Chaplain will accompany the officers and make the actual notification. In the case of a death, the chaplain offers assistance where needed to coordinate activities between families, the Coroner’s Office, local pastors, and funeral homes.
Community and Religious Liaison
The SPD Chaplains coordinate activities between the department, local agencies and religious groups. Community meetings may be organized as needed to address potential and current issues involving the community and the police.
Officers and Staff Support
The SPD Chaplains coordinate department-wide activities for the officers and their family members. In the case of a departmental personnel sickness or death, they would assist in coordinating SPD activities, including visitations and funeral services as needed, and assist the families in times of hardship.
CITIZENS POLICE ACADEMY
Savannah Police Department’s Citizens Police Academy is a six-week program designed to allow residents to informally interact with the members of the police department and the local criminal justice system. Participants meet officers from each unit of SPD who will explain the how and why of what they do and feature speakers from various agencies with whom they interact.
Participants will meet officers from each unit of the department who will explain their unique roles. Speakers also will be present various areas of the department.
The academy allows citizens to tour the 911 Center and all of the SPD precincts. Participants in the course will also learn about defensive tactics and have a day focused on traffic stops and vehicle pullover simulation.
The class meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m. at the SPD Professional Development Center, 3401 Edwin St. There is no registration fee for the six-week course. The next class begins on Sept. 26. Applications are being accepted until Friday, Sept. 20.
Applications can be found here. Applications must be signed and notarized. They can be turned in at any precinct or the Police Barracks at Habersham and Oglethorpe Streets.
Graduates will receive a certificate of completion from Savannah Police Department and will be eligible to apply to the Volunteers in Policing Program if they want to support SPD through volunteering efforts.
COMMUNITY NOTIFICATION SYSTEM
The SPD encourages everyone who lives, works and plays in Savannah and Chatham County to sign up to receive emergency and community notifications on their cells phones.
SwiftReach allows us to send emergency and community notifications to alert the public to missing persons, severe weather, evacuation orders, and other urgent public safety scenarios.
Subscribers can also sign-up to receive notifications in other areas: where they work, where their children attend school, etc. And they can sign up for non-emergency notifications, such as road closures, neighborhood watch meetings, and more.
Registration is free and all alerts will be clearly identified as originating from SPD, City of Savannah, Chatham County or Chatham Emergency Management Agency officials. The system is designed to make phone calls to specific people or areas in the event of an emergency or for sharing important information.
All listed landline phone numbers have already been programmed into the system, but since many people no longer have a home phone or primarily use their mobile devices, the SPD encourages citizens to register their cell phones with SwiftReach.
SwiftReach will make up to two attempts to reach each number in the system and will leave a message if the call is routed to voicemail. Addtional subscribers can sign-up to receive text messages and/or e-mails.
The system can make thousands of calls in a minute to convey vital information.
All calls you receive will have the caller ID of “SPD-Emergency.”
Crime Prevention Tips
Savannah Police remind you that you can help prevent crime. By taking some basic steps to “target harden” your home, your car, your belongings and your family, you can help police make our community safe and secure.
SPD Offers Free Business / Home Inspections!
The Crime Prevention Officers of each precinct are available on an appointment basis to come to your home or business, inspect it for security and give you advice on how to better protect you, your family and your belongings. The officers will show you how to properly mark your larger valuables for identification and how to make an inventory list. The service is free of charge! If you are interested in having this free service performed, simply contact your local precinct at the following numbers to arrange for an appointment.
Cpl. William Barnett
E-Mail Cpl. Barnett
Cpl. Barry Lewis
E-mail Cpl. Lewis
Officer Samantha Heard
E-mail Officer Heard
Cpl. Sharif Lockett
E-mail Cpl. Lockett
(912) 525-3100 ext: 3008
Register your Valuable Property
When Property Crimes occur, the stolen items often end up at pawn shops. With the SPD Pawn Unit teaming up with local pawn shops and Leads Online, a new database that compares what is bought at local pawn shops to an inventory of reported stolen items, SPD can more easily recover stolen property. Leads Online also offers the citizens of the City of Savannah and Chatham County the ability to create a personal inventory of their belongings. This inventory can contain pictures, serial numbers, descriptions and scan of purchase reciepts to a secure, password protected database. This inventory is then added to the data that is scanned by Leads Online to check for pawned stolen property. In the end, this results in higher recovery rates of stolen property and prosecution of the criminal who are pawning it for quick money.
To start your own inventory or to learn more about Report It from Leads Online click the image above.
How to Prevent Identity Theft
Identity Theft occurs when someone steals your personal information, your social security number, or your checking or credit card numbers and then poses as you. The thief then has complete access to your money, and they can and will spend it as they wish.
It can take months and even years to undo the mess created by a thief in just days or even minutes; however, you can make it tougher for thieves to access your information. Below are some simple reminders of how to best protect yourself, your money, and your good name:
- Do not give out personal information. Credit card numbers, social security numbers, and other identifying numbers are already on file with the financial institutions you do business with. Legitimate business will not call you and ask for that information. Remember, if someone has a right to this information about you, they should already have it!
- Report lost or stolen checks. The numbers contained on your checks can give clear access to a thief. Always properly store cancelled checks and examine new checks to be sure none were stolen in shipment. Make sure you store them in a safe and secure location.
- Destroy unused financial solicitations. Before discarding unwanted junk mail, be sure to tear-up or shred it since it may contain information that a thief could use to steal your identity. Remember to safely destroy any types of financial statements or receipts since they also contain sensitive information.
- Guard your ATM card and PIN number. While these types of cards can make life easier for you, they can completely disrupt your life if they fall into the hands of a thief. Always guard your card and PIN and never leave receipts laying around. Also, never allow someone to stand behind you at a teller machine. Thieves are trained at watching the key pad for PIN numbers.
- Make sure your mailbox is secure. Promptly remove mail when it has been delivered. Thieves often raid mailboxes to obtain credit card information or financial statements.
- Contact the major credit reporting companies. These companies can tell you who or what company has accessed your credit report. A copy can be obtained for a small fee from the company. The three major companies are:
- Equifax: (800) 685-1111
- Experian: (888) 397-3742
- TransUnion: (800) 916-8800
If you have been a victim of identity theft, take these steps immediately:
- Call police and file a report
- Contact your bank(s) and financial institutions
- Contact your credit card suppliers
- Contact the Social Security Fraud Hotline at (800) 269-0271
If you are a victim of fraud or identity theft, contact each of the three national consumer reporting agencies. Ask each agency to place a fraud alert on your credit report and send you a copy of your credit file. This is free if you are a victim of identity theft, if you have been denied credit, if you receive welfare benefits or if you are unemployed. The three agencies are:
- P.O. Box 105873
Atlanta, GA 30348
- Order Report: (800) 685-111
- Fraud: (800) 525-6285
- P.O. Box 105873
- P.O. Box 596
Pittsburgh, PA. 15230
- Order Report: (888)397-3742
- Fraud: (800) 311-4769
- P.O. Box 596
- Transunion Corporation
- P.O. Box 34012
Fullerton, CA 92834
- Order Report: (800) 916-8800
- Fraud: (800)680-7289
- P.O. Box 34012
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also has an identity theft affidavit to help you report information to companies using one standard form.
Reporting Fraudulent use of Your Checks
If you are unable to write checks because of bad checks written in your name, the merchant will direct you to one of the check verification services below. If you are unable to open a checking account because of the activities of an impostor, contact Chexsystems or one of the resources listed below:
- CheckRite: (800) 766-2748
- Chexsystems: (800) 428-9623
- CrossCheck: (707) 586-0551
- Equifax: (800) 437-5120
- National Processing Co.: (800) 526-5380
- SCAN: (800) 262-7771
- Telecheck: (800) 710-9898
Stolen cars, vans, trucks and motorcycles cause economic hardship for victims, increase everyone’s insurance premiums, and may be used to commit violent crimes. Every day cars and trucks are stolen from malls, streets, driveways, parking lots and garages, and car dealerships. Vehicle theft can happen any place and at any time.
A few common sense steps can help you avoid being a victim of the nations fastest growing property crime:
- Never leave your car running unattended.
- Never leave your keys in the car or ignition.
- Always roll up your windows and lock the car, even if it is in front of your home.
- Never leave valuables in plain view, even if your car is locked. This is the No. 1 reason cars are broken into. Put them in the trunk out of sight.
- Always park in busy, well-lit areas whenever possible.
- Install a mechanical device that locks to the steering wheel, column, or brake to prevent the wheel from being turned more than a few degrees. These devices are commonly referred to as clubs, collars, or J-bars and may serve as a deterrent if installed properly.
- Investigate the purchase of an auto security system if you live in a high-theft area or drive a theft-prone vehicle.
- Always leave just the ignition key with the attendant if you park in a commercial garage or lot. Make sure no identifying information is attached. Do the same when you take your car for repairs.
- Carry your registration and insurance card with you. Don’t leave personal identification documents or credit cards in your vehicle.
- Copy your license plate and vehicle identification (VIN) numbers on a card and keep them with your driver’s license. If your vehicle is stolen, police will need this information promptly.
Parking Lot Safety
Here are just a few safety tips for parking your car in a public or private parking lot:
- Always lock the car and roll up the windows all the way. If you have any valuables or packages, lock them in the trunk.
- If you’re staying late, park the car near an exit or the attendant — not in an area that will be empty and remote when you leave.
- As you approach the car, have your keys ready and check the seats before getting in.
- You might also ask the security guard or a co-worker to escort you to your car.
- By taking a common sense attitude towards ones security, owners and users can both greatly increase the safety of the parking lot. It may not be heaven, but at least it will be crime free.
Vacation Home Security
So you’re going on vacation and want your house and contents to be safe and secure while you’re gone? Well here are some tips that will reduce your odds of becoming a victim:
Cancel all regular deliveries:
- Get a neighbor to take in any free papers and mail
Before leaving, see that:
- All outside doors, garages, and tool sheds are locked
- Turn off gas and water supplies when on extended trips (contact a qualified plumber or utility service provider)
- Arrange for your pets to be looked after
- Have someone cut the lawn in your absence
- Let a reliable neighbor have a key to remove mail and papers from view and to keep an eye on the property for you when you are away
- Deposit all valuables, such as jewelry, in a safety deposit box or with trusted friends.
- Do not lock any internal doors. In the event of a break-in it will mean more damage.
- Try to make the house look occupied. Use a time switch for lighting a main room or hallway.
- If your TV or stereo has a timer, use it.
Basic Home Security
The following information is provided for informational services only. It is in no way intended to be an endorsement for any type of alarm, alarm system or alarm company.
Doors & Windows
- Security starts with properly locked doors and windows, since these are the most common entry points.
- Install dead bolts.
- Use a door brace of some sort for sliding glass doors.
- All locks should be changed when you move into a previously occupied house no mater who you’ve purchased the home from.
- Don’t hide keys anywhere. Keys hidden outside are easily found.
- Don’t encourage a burglar by displaying valuable items where they can be seen from a window. Purses and wallets left in plain sight are prime targets.
- Engrave all your property with unique identifiers.
- Make a list of all your valuables, including serial numbers.
While Away From Home
- Leave on a radio or TV. Many radios and TVs have timers you can set to come on at specific times.
- Consider putting lights on a timer if you return home after dark regularly, including motion sensitive flood lights.
If you will be away for a few days:
- Arrange for someone to cut the grass.
- Ask your neighbor to park in your driveway.
- Ask a neighbor to keep an eye on house and pick up your mail and newspapers.
Install a Home Security Device
- Noise is the burglar’s biggest enemy. Even when the above tips are used, an intruder-sensing alarm is necessary.
- Physical security, like locks and good neighbors or dogs, can be easily overcome.
- An alarm system will make so much noise that a burglar will not stay and is less likely to run off with anything. Once the alarm is sounded, the intruder knows he has been detected and will waste no time in exiting.
- Of course, if you are present at the time and are alerted, take any precautionary actions that could save your life.
How to Avoid Being Assaulted
- Avoid walking or running alone at night. Instead go walking or jogging with a friend.
- Don’t use headphones while walking, driving, or jogging.
- Always walk in well-lit areas.
- Avoid the use of shortcuts.
- After dark, keep away from large bushes or doorways where someone could be lurking.
- Always stay near the curb.
- If someone in a vehicle stops and asks for directions, answer from a distance. Do not approach the vehicle.
- If you suspect that you are being followed, go immediately to an area with lights and people. If needed, turn around and walk in the opposite direction, your follower will also have to reverse directions.
- Never display or “flash” your cash, especially when leaving an ATM.
Carjacking: Reduce the Risk
- As you walk to your car, look around.
- Before you get into your car, look on the inside.
- When traveling, make sure that your car has plenty of gas and is in good working order.
- Avoid traveling alone, especially at night.
- Lock your car doors and roll up windows whenever you are in your car.
- Decide on a well-lit traveling route. Let someone know your plans and estimated arrival time.
- Don’t open your car door or window to strangers if you feel threatened.
- Park in safe, well-lit areas.
- If a carjacker demands your car or keys, give them up. Your car is insured and can be replaced – you can’t. Remember, a survivor is a winner!
CrimeStoppers lets you call in a crime tip without giving your name.
NO tracing. NO caller ID. Click to Leave a Tip.
CRIME DOESN’T PAY BUT WE DO!
CrimeStoppers pays cash rewards for new information that solves a crime! Police solve many crimes in our area but they can’t solve them without your help. Local citizens created the program to help solve crime through the combined efforts of private citizens, the police, and the media.
There are many reasons why some callers do not call police: fear of the criminal, mistrust of police, or a disgruntled former crime victim. Other callers don’t know who to call. Some fear police will not believe them, and other unique situations make the caller feel they have no where else to turn for help. Many callers take great risks to help us.
YOU CAN BE A NAMELESS HERO!
24-hours a day, seven days a week interviewers ask callers for the facts on WHO did the crime WHERE did the crime take place, WHEN did the crime occur and WHAT does the caller know that can help us solve the crime. If the caller does not wish to work directly with police, the caller is given a code number. No arrest is ever made just on a tip. Interviewers send your information to the investigator who must find proof.
HOW CAN I GET A REWARD?
Although most callers are motivated by civic duty rather than cash, callers may get a reward if the tip is new information that leads to the arrest of the person(s) who committed the crime. Most callers refuse a reward to help crime victims and police. Once a month, volunteers approve rewards. Callers must call back with a code number. The caller is then told where to pick up the reward. The caller never has to give his name.
DOES IT WORK?
YES! Since 1983, your tips helped the CrimeStoppers program (formerly Silent Witness) solve many crimes: murders, assaults, robberies, drug deals and others. Tips have even prevented crimes. Leave a Tip Now.
HOW CAN I HELP?
Rewards are paid from donations. ALL donations and volunteers are appreciated! Invite us to be a speaker at your next meeting.
NEED MORE INFORMATION?
Local media donate more than a million dollars a year in advertising to help solve crime. Unsolved crimes are listed in the Savannah Morning News and other papers, area TV and radio news.
Our mission: To maintain CrimeStoppers as an effective crime-solving organization in Savannah-Chatham County with the primary objective being, Community, Media and Law Enforcement.
“CrimeStoppers Working Together to Solve Crime.”
The Savannah Police Department offers the police exploring program for our community’s youth. The objective of the program is to offer teenagers and young adults (ages 14-20) an opportunity to experience hands-on engagement and learning experiences with law enforcement professionals. Some of the requirements to become a Law Enforcement Explorer are:
- A youth, aged 14-20
- Be interested in learning about law enforcement
- Maintain a 2.1 grade point average
- Be of good moral character
- No prior convictions or serious traffic violations
- Pass a background check and oral board interview
The Savannah Police Department is committed to the development of youth programs designed to build virtuous character, promote good citizenship, develop physical and mental fitness, educate and engage youths in understanding police operations, interest them in potential law enforcement careers, and build mutual trust and respect.
Law Enforcement Explorers, through training and completion of Law Enforcement Explorer classes, can be involved in performing a multitude of law enforcement tasks. The Explorer is a civilian volunteer involved with SPD on a part-time basis. Law Enforcement Explorers may be engaged in the following types of activities to assist a sworn police officer:
- Traffic and parking control
- Special event guides
- Typing, filing and other clerical activities
- Child identification programs
- Crime prevention programs
- Community assistance programs
- Patrol support services (only when assigned directly under the supervision of a sworn Police Officer)
- Other related duties as approved by the Post Advisor or Senior Explorer Advisor
Law Enforcement Explorers also attend one meeting a month, where they participate in hands-on training and other fun learning activities.
Why Join The Explorer Post Program?
- Hands-on training
- Make new friends
- Team-oriented environment
- Ride along program
- Learn about policing in the 21st Century
- Participate in competitions
- Opportunity for advancement
- Life Skills
Explorer Post Program Info:
- Applications are now being accepted for the SPD Explorer Post Program. There is a non-refundable membership due of $100. This fee includes the BSA administrative fees and insurance. The first $25 is due by the first meeting. The additional $75 may be paid in installments during the first 6 months.
- The Learning for Life application will also need to be filled out. Please fill out this application three separate times by hand.
- Explorers will meet the third Monday of every month from 6 to 8 p.m. at the SPD Training Center, 3401 Edwin Street.
END GUN VIOLENCE
What is the End Gun Violence: Step Forward initiative?
The Savannah-Chatham initiative to End Gun Violence: Step Forward is an approach that will target the most violent groups and gangs members who are responsible for a majority of the shootings and homicides in our community.
This approach tells gang and group members to lay down their weapons. The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Chatham County District Attorney’s Office have pledged their support to prosecute group and gang members tied to gun violence to the fullest extent of the law.
Social services are being offered to anyone who wants to get out of the cycle of violence. Build-a-Bridge is a non-profit organization that will help individuals get the counseling, job training, and other services they need to help turn their lives around.
This approach was created by the National Network for Safe Communities under the direction of Dr. David M. Kennedy and John Jay College President Jeremy Travis in 2009
More than 60 other cities across the United States have successfully implemented this sort of group violence reduction initiative.
The National Network focuses on supporting cities implementing proven strategic interventions to reduce violence and improve public safety, minimize arrest and incarceration, strengthen communities, and improve relationships between law enforcement and the communities it serves. For more about The National Network, click here (http://nnscommunities.org/)
Isaac Felton, Crime Reduction Administrator
Felton is the Crime Reduction Administrator for the End Gun Violence: Step Forward initiative.
To contact Felton directly, please CLICK HERE or call 912-210-8035.
LGBTQ OUTREACH PROGRAM
The Collaborative works to create a greater understanding between SPD and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community through open and safe communication, education, and outreach. It consists of an SPD officer and a board of community members.
The Collaborative brings awareness to issues, concerns, complaints, and compliments to law enforcement with timely and non-bias resolutions.
Any members of the community who believes they are being treated differently or experienced discrimination by an officer can access services via the SPD LGBTQ Liaison. Investigations and responses for all reports will be prompt. All information is confidential.
NOTE: Services are provided only for non-emergency, pre-reported concerns. This does not displace law enforcement procedure.
In case of an emergency, dial 911.
The collaborative provides no legal advice or legal services.
The LGBTQ Liaison is:
SCpl Tracy Walden
Phone: (912) 651-6653
Send SCpl Walden an E-mail
NATIONAL NIGHT OUT
Who is Involved?
National Night Out involves citizens, law enforcement agencies, civic groups, businesses, neighborhood organizations and local officials.
The purpose of National Night Out is to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness and to generate support for or participation in local anti-crime programs. This annual event strengthens neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships and sends a message to criminalsthat neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.
How does it work?
Along with the traditional display of outdoor lights and front porch vigils, cities and neighborhoods “celebrate” NNO with a variety of events and activities, such as block parties, cookouts, visits from local law enforcement and community leaders, parades, exhibits, flashlight walks, contests, and youth programs.
NNO has proven to be an effective and enjoyable program to promote neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships in our fight for a safer community.
If your neighborhood would like to participate, please contact your precinct Crime Prevention Officer.
2019 Participating Neighborhoods
(All events are Tuesday, July 6 unless otherwise noted.)
Carver Village, Carver Village Community Center, 905 Collat Ave., 6-8 p.m.
Cann Park/Jackson Park/Feiler Terrace, First Nazareth Missionary Baptist Church, 1023 W. 44th St., 5-7 p.m.
Cyler Brownville, Tompkins Center, 2319 Ogeechee Road, 6-8 p.m.
Downtown Neighborhood Association, Calhoun Square, Abercorn Street at Taylor Street, 5-7 p.m.
East Savannah, Treat Avenue Park, Treat Avenue at Gable Street, 6-8 p.m.
(CANCELED) Eastside/Live Oak/Ben Van Clark, WW Law Center, 909 E. Bolton St., 5:30-8 p.m.
Edgemere/Sackville, Edgemere/Sackville Neighborhood Park, Cedar Street at Delesseps Avenue, 6-8 p.m.
Feiler Park/Dittmerville, Hitch Park, 57th at Crane streets, 6-8 p.m.
Gordonston, 300 block of Akinson Avenue, 6-8 p.m.
Grace and Deliverance, 11826 Apache Ave., 6-8 p.m.
Housing Authority, EOA, 1120 May St., 6-8 p.m. AUGUST 7
Leeds Gate, Leeds Gate Road at Egmont Road, 5-7 p.m.
Liberty City/Summerside, Liberty City Community Center, 1401 Mills B. Lane, 6-8 p.m.
Ogeecheeton, Pate Street park by basketball courts, 6-8 p.m.
Parkside, Brinkman-Delorme Park, Waters Avenue at E. 49th Street, 6:30-8 p.m.
Poplar Place, park on Alpine Drive, 6-8 p.m.
Rose Dhu, Coffee Bluff Marina, 6 p.m. OCTOBER 5
Savannah Gardens, TBA
Sylvan Terrace, Sylvan Terrace Park, Montgomery Street at Berkley Place, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Tatemville, TCC Center, 333 Coleman St., 6-8 p.m.
(CANCELED)Thomas Square, Thomas Park, 35th at Drayton streets, 5:30-7:30 p.m. –
Tremont Park, church at 2002 Palmetto Ave., 6-8 p.m.
Twickenham, 1700 block of Duvall Street between Goebel and Lawton Ave., 6-8 p.m.
Victory Heights/Avondale, Victory Heights Park at 2200 block of E. 41st and 42nd streets, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Canceled if raining.
West Savannah/Hudson Hills, Fellwood Park, 1401 Fellwood Drive, 6-8 p.m.
The Woods, 7364-C Hodgson Memorial Drive, 6-8 p.m.
(CANCELED)Woodville, Woodville Community Center, 127 Darling St., 6-8 p.m.
Windsor Forest, Tribble Park on Largo Drive, 6-8 p.m.
Launched nationally in 1972, Neighborhood Watch counts on citizens partnering with law enforcement to keep a trained eye and ear on their communities, while demonstrating their presence at all times of day and night. (The program took off quickly. In just ten years, data showed that 12 percent of the population was involved in a Neighborhood Watch.) Neighborhood Watch works because it reduces opportunities for crime to occur; it doesn’t rely on altering or changing the criminal’s behavior or motivation.
How to Start a Neighborhood Watch
If you are interested in participating in or starting a neighborhood watch in your community please contact your precinct and speak with the Crime Prevention Officer.
- Work with SPD. Our Crime Prevention Officers will be the source of necessary information and training for your group.
- Hold regular meetings to help residents get to know each other and to decide upon program strategies and activities.
- Consider linking with an existing organization, such as a citizens association, community development office, tenants’ association, or housing authority. They may be able to provide an existing infrastructure you can use. If you live in a smaller neighborhood consider joining with another neighborhood to form a joint neighborhood watch.
- Canvass door-to-door to recruit members.
- Ask people who seldom leave their homes to be “window watchers,” looking out for children and reporting any unusual activities in the neighborhood.
- Translate crime and drug prevention materials into Spanish or other languages needed by non-English speakers in your community. If necessary, have a translator at meetings.
- Sponsor a crime and drug prevention fair at a church hall, temple, shopping mall, or community center.
- Gather the facts about crime in your neighborhood. Check police reports, conduct victimization surveys, and learn residents’ perceptions about crimes. Often residents’ opinions are not supported by facts, and accurate information can reduce the fear of crime.
- Physical conditions, like abandoned cars or overgrown vacant lots, contribute to crime. Sponsor cleanups, encourage residents to beautify the area, and ask them to turn on outdoor lights at night. Work with City or County Code Enforcement to assist with blight issues.
- Work with small businesses to repair rundown storefronts, clean up littered streets, and create jobs for young people.
- Start a block parent program to help children cope with emergencies while walking to and from school or playing in the area.
- Emphasize that watch groups are not vigilantes and should not assume the role of the police. Their duty is to ask neighbors to be alert, observant, and caring, and to report suspicious activity or crimes immediately to the police.
YOUTH SUMMER CAMP
Four five-day camps will take place at Savannah State University and will teach skills in character building, goal setting, decision making, crime reporting, stranger danger and much more. SPD’s Juvenile Officers launched the camp in 2013 under the direction of Retired Maj. Richard Zapal to develop rapport between youth and law enforcement officers early in life. Learning strategies will include guest speakers, field trips and hand-on activities. Youth will also be exposed to many aspects of college life with support from SSU.
The free camp targets children ages 8-14 of all socioeconomic backgrounds. The initiative is designed to provide youth with alternatives to risky or criminal behavior during the summer. All Chatham County children meeting the age requirement are invited to attend.
The mission of the SPD Youth Summer Camp is to establish trust and rapport between Savannah’s youth and its law enforcement community by teaching skills in goal setting, decision making and good citizenship, along with the inner workings of policing under the mentorship of SPD staff.
SPD Youth Summer Camp Info:
- Applications are now being accepted for the 2020 Savannah Police Youth Summer Camps. The camp targets children ages 8-14 and is free of charge.
- Each camp will run Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Beginning at 8 a.m., children can be dropped off at Savannah State University Police Headquarters, at 3219 College Street, in the Hubert C Building.
June 15-19 Boys
June 22-26 Girls
July 6-10 BoysSPD Youth Camp 2020 App
July 13-17 Girls
The application deadline is May 1.
- The 4 five-day camps will take place at Savannah State University’s Police Headquarters.
- Campers will learn skills in character building, goal setting, decision making, crime reporting, stranger danger and self-defense.
- Learning strategies will include guest speakers, field trips and hand-on activities.
- Youth also will be exposed to many aspects of college life with the support of SSU.
- The free camp targets children ages 8-14 of all socioeconomic backgrounds.
- The goal is to provide youngsters with alternatives to risky or criminal behavior during the summer.
- All Chatham County children meeting the age requirement are invited to attend.