A small West Annapolis Neighborhood Watch committee (Chip
Seymour, Molly Smith, Nick Peters, and Earl Diamond) feels that a
"keep-it-simple" Neighborhood Watch Program for West Annapolis is the
way to go. If anyone in the WACA Association feels that more is needed
than what is described below, that would be fine but that person (or others)
needs to be ready to manage it.
This is what we think is necessary to increase the awareness of our neighbors
and in so doing have everyone take actions necessary to increase the safety of
this great neighborhood of ours:
- Use the WACA Newsletter as a vehicle to educate WACA members of common sense
tips that, if acted upon, will keep us all safe.
- Use formal WACA meetings to underscore major components of what is contained
in this e-mail.
- Use the updated WACA Directory of names, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses
as a communications vehicle to alert neighbors as quickly as possible of a
"situation" in our neighborhood. If still possible, given that
the Directory may already gone to the printer, perhaps the Tips listed below
could be printed in the Directory.
- Educate our immediate neighbors on what they can do to be the eyes of our
immediate surroundings, whether we are out of town or not.
- Talk to the neighbors living on either side of you informing each if a
delivery person is expected, guests are expected, if you are leaving town and
for how long. This way everyone is on “maximum alert” to call the police
if strangers are in the area.
- ALWAYS lock your doors (cars and homes): adults AND children need to know
- NEVER leave valuables openly exposed in a locked car or near an exposed window
in your house.
- Do not open your door to unsolicited visitors - speak through the door - tell
them they must have a permit to solicit in the City of Annapolis. Then phone
the Annapolis Police Department and request an officer come and escort the
people out of the neighborhood. Until the police arrive, inform your neighbors
that these people are in the area and NOT to open their doors.
- Do not advertise an upcoming vacation on social networks.
- Either stop your papers and mail before extended travel or ask a neighbor to
collect your papers and mail DAILY.
- If you have to replace outside light fixtures, look to purchasing a motion
sensitive model or timer switch adjusting it for dusk to dawn. Exterior
lighting is a deterrent.
- Before the school year starts, determine a plan with your children - what
they should do or where they should go if you are not home when they arrive.
Make sure you confirm with the receiving household that they are willing to
participate when you are not home.
- When out walking, pay attention to your surroundings (walking with headphones
makes you a potential target). Do not hesitate calling the Police Department if
you see a stranger on a bicycle checking out the neighborhood
- Do not leave your house with the lower level windows open. If you do leave
windows open, make sure that they are intact before re-entering your house.
- Keep shrubbery around house trimmed so as not to allow a hiding place where
strangers can peek in your windows.
- Do not leave personal property unattended in your yard. That can become too
tempting for someone passing by.
- Regarding ladders left out in yards and unlocked sheds: While it might
not be seasonally appropriate, as windows are likely closed at certain times of
year, but ladders allow access in other ways. Access can be gained other
than through windows such as second story sliding doors on decks and balconies,
which may not be locked with the same vigilance as a front door.
NOTE: Molly Smith attended a briefing (16 January 2012)
by the Annapolis Police Department (APD) and reports:
I made it to the NWatch meeting - not much to report but I
did remember in the course of the presentation that we (I think) forgot to
mention in our list of precautions for residents to make and keep a list of
serial numbers - they can be VERY helpful in identifying stolen goods and
connecting incidents - not to mention reuniting articles to their owners. They
are going to make their power point presentation available to us which covered
Do's, Don't and Precautions. (nothing really different from what we have) the
point they stressed the most was DO NOT WAIT to report a problem -
time is of the essence. Next NW meeting at the APD. April 10th 6pm.
I will offer myself up to be a
contact for Wardour - but please call me AFTER you have contacted
the APD 410-268-4141.
– Chip Seymour
April 24, 2016