HARLAN COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Police say newly created Neighborhood Watch programs in Harlan County are helping catch criminals and reduce crime.
Several communities have started the programs in the past month.
Members say the goal is to reduce theft and drugs in the neighborhoods.
Evarts is one of the communities that started a Neighborhood Watch program. Around twelve people are involved.
"Be the eyes and ears out here in the communities and let them (police) know if anything suspicious is going on and of course report any crimes," said Preston McLain.
Evarts police say a member caught some juveniles destroying a picnic shelter and reported it immediately. Police say because of that, they were able to respond and save the city's property and handle the situation.
"It's already helped, and it's just going to continue to bring positive things to the city of Evarts. I think it's going to deter people from wanting to do stuff because if they know somebody is watching, people are less likely to do stuff. It's a proven fact," said Evarts Police Officer William Clogston.
Neighbors say they feel safer knowing someone is watching their home.
"It makes the neighborhood feel more secure. It provides better living in the neighborhood instead of being scared," said McLain.
Sheriff Marvin J. Lipfird plans to expand neighborhood watches all over the county.
Anyone who wants to join a Neighborhood Watch can call the Harlan County Sheriff's Department or your local police department.
The groups hold meetings and also have classes on how to protect yourself against crime.
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