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People Turn to Successful Neighborhood Watch Group for Help

A Central Arkansas neighborhood watch group is fighting crime and others want in.
JACKSONVILLE, AR- Police in Jacksonville have an extra pair of eyes watching their streets.  A neighborhood watch group stepped up to the plate to cut down crime.

“We just cruise around and if we see something we normally won't see, we call the police department. I usually drive around the neighborhood at least once a day. I try to do it during the time that's mostly common, late in the evenings, early mornings," said John Brannen, Neighborhood Watch.

When the group formed in 2011, they reported crimes 92 percent of the time. Two years later, neighbors cut crime by 73 percent and even took down two drug houses.

“We shut down 2 drug houses. It's working. Anytime we can get one drug dealer out of the neighborhood, I'm overjoyed," said Barbara Mashburn.

Barbara Mashburn formed the watch in her neighborhood. 32 neighbors joined her mission after a series of car break-ins, house break-ins, vandalisms, etc.

“It was getting bad here in this neighborhood," explained Mashburn.

Now, the watch is only reporting crimes about 19 percent of the time and barely seeing any activity thanks to teamwork.

“That means you can go out at night and not be afraid that you're gonna get shot or beat up or whatever," said Mashburn.

Word is spreading of this neighborhood watch group’s success. Mashburn is currently helping two people start their own neighborhood watch.

“We help the police officers. We're neighbors watching neighbors," said Mashburn.

Police were not available to talk about the watch program. Mashburn credits Jacksonville Mayor Gary Fletcher for helping the group get started.

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