A Corvallis Police Department Crime Prevention Program
Neighbors Watching Out For Neighbors… It Works!
What is Neighborhood Watch?
Neighborhood Watch is a program where neighbors help neighbors keep their homes and families safe. It is aimed at reducing crime in our community by stopping crime before it happens. Crimes are least likely to occur in neighborhoods where people are alert to the potential of crime and are willing to look out for one another's interests.
Why Start a Watch Group?
Residential crime is serious. No area of town is immune, and a typical month in Corvallis sees about fifteen home burglaries. With the average residential burglary in the US costing the homeowner $1,490, that’s about $22,350 of stolen goods every month and $286,200 each year -- right here in our own community.
More important than the dollars, however, is the sense of personal violation and feelings of lost security that victims experience after a criminal has roamed freely through their home. And there is always a risk of violence during a burglary. To prevent themselves from being caught, burglars are prone to assault someone who is at home when the burglary is taking place. Unfortunately, these assaults often result in serious injury and sometimes are fatal.
Home burglaries occur everywhere in Corvallis. However, according to the National Sheriff's Association, Neighborhood Watch is the single most effective deterrent to residential crime. So, you can do something to make your neighborhood a less-likely target. When neighbors who are informed about crime prevention join together to take active ownership of what goes on in their neighborhood, the opportunities for burglars diminish.
It takes commitment to a good partnership among neighbors and between neighbors and police.
How Does it Work?
When you and your neighbors sign up for Neighborhood Watch, you form a partnership with each other and with the Corvallis Police Department. You and your neighbors agree to practice good home security measures, keep an eye on each other's property, and report suspicious activity to the police. And the police provide you with crime prevention training and information.
The Corvallis Police give you home security training at your startup meeting. And once your group is up and running, we send you alerts that warn you about home burglaries in Corvallis, crime that may affect your neighborhood, confidence schemes, computer scams, and other topics to help you avoid becoming a victim of crime. And we provide you with window decals and street signs that let burglars know you are connected with the Corvallis Police and that you and your neighbors watch out for each other. We also send Neighborhood Watch members a quarterly newsletter with crime prevention tips and information on family safety and home security.
But real program success, for your neighborhood, is up to you and your neighbors. That means the social component is key to making Neighborhood Watch work. The more that you and your neighbors get to know and talk with each other, the more you will take ownership of your neighborhood and look out for each other. So it is important to have neighborhood events such as National Night Out and other social functions during which social ties are strengthened and neighborhood issues are discussed. We recommend that you get together at least four times a year -- even if it is just for coffee and cookies and a half-hour of hellos and "Did you know…"
If group members are committed, it is easy to have an active Neighborhood Watch and a safe neighborhood.
How to Start a Watch Group
Starting a Neighborhood Watch Group is simple. Just contact the Corvallis Police Department at Neighborhood Watch (preferred way to contact us) or at 766-6863. Along with your name, address, and phone number, tell us how many homes are in your neighborhood and we will send you brochures and invitations to a startup meeting that you can give to your neighbors. Once you decide when and where you will hold your meeting, let us know and we'll facilitate your meeting.
During the meeting, we'll tell you all about the program and give you information on home and personal security to get you started. We will walk you through the steps that you can take to protect your home and auto from intrusion, tell you how to safe-guard your valuables, and talk with you about ways to avoid identity theft. We will also provide you with window decals and street signs along with a selection of free brochures on a variety of crime prevention topics.
Neighborhood Watch is provided by the Corvallis Police Department free of any costs to member groups. Please join us in this program and help make your neighborhood and all of Corvallis a safer place to enjoy living in.
Neighborhood Watch Contact Information:
The preferred way to contact the Corvallis Police Department about Neighborhood Watch is via e-mail.
Corvallis Police Department
180 NW 5th Street
Corvallis, OR 97330
Other Crime Prevention Programs
The Corvallis Police Department provides several other crime prevention programs that are also free of cost. All crime prevention programs are coordinated by the Auxiliary. For information, just click on these links.
Cops & Robbers 101 - Citizen Police Academy
National Night Out
Corvallis Police Volunteer Auxiliary