Thursday, October 25, 2012

Report on Cavendish Neighborhood Watch Informational Meeting

Trooper Timothy Gould of the Vermont State Police (VSP) spoke to a small audience on Oct. 25 about Neighborhood watches and other ways crime can be deterred. Gould explained that alarms in and of themselves are a deterrent, particularly if they are audible.

Alarm calls that are received by the State Police are generally attributable to an animal, wind, or something other than an intruder. The rate of “false” alarms is 95% or higher.  Consequently, unless the person has registered with the state police, or there is evidence of a break-in, the state police will not respond. VSP responding to a routine alarm, where the residence is registered, is generally not treated as an emergency.

If something occurs in your neighborhood that concerns you, report it to the state police. You can use the on-line Confidential Web Tip Information System, which allows citizens to submit information anonymously. Tips submitted are encrypted, confidential, anonymous and are immediately and securely transferred directly to VSP.

Among the most important pieces of information are vehicle descriptions (make, year, model and license), as most crimes involve cars in some way.

The role of the town constable, Seth Perry, was discussed. In general, he is dispatched by the town office or VSP. Consequently, for non-emergencies, such as stray animals, during regular business hours, call the town office 226-7292. For emergencies call 911. For non-emergencies when the town office is closed, call the Rockingham Barracks of the VSP 875-2112. Seth Perry can be reached by e-mail. 

The number of burglaries for Cavendish this summer was small-four. In general, there are approximately one or fewer instances per week in the town, which involve the state police. However, speeding, driving under the influence, crashes and domestic violence are quality of life issues that are of concern to VSP. Gould was particularly concerned about domestic violence, since it is an underreported crime, only about 10% of the time. However, he noted that people knowing their neighbors and strong community support could reduce both domestic violence and other crimes.

Since there has been discussion about Cavendish having its own police force, Rich Svec, town manager, provided rough cost estimates. To start a police force - two officers, cars, office space, computers, equipment, radios etc.- the cost would be approximately $430,000. This would increase taxes by $329.44 for a house assessed at $200,000.

Svec also noted that new signs have just been received for Depot Street in Proctorsville. They are yellow (advisory) for 25 miles an hour and indicate a sharp bend in the road. It is hoped that once they are up, they will help to control speed.

Seth Perry noted that he now has radar and has been able to monitor areas where people are reporting speeding issues. Perry drives an unmarked white Impala.

Sgt Gould provided the following resource links for people to check:

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