Alderperson Anthony Nudo hosted listening session

http://www.nnwi.org/

A small group of eleven people attended Alderperson Anthony Nudo’s listening session earlier tonight, which was held in the gymnasium of McKinley Elementary School.  Possibly the weather had something to do with the low turnout.  Present were crime prevention officers Jeff Wamboldt and Ron Francis, and Neighborhood Watch block captain Dino Marchesini.

Francis told the group that there are 160 neighborhood watch groups in the city of Kenosha.  Three components of a neighborhood watch are:

  1. Look out for each other;

  1. Build a sense of community.  Be a tight-knit group; and
  2. Call them anytime you see any suspicious activity.

Francis also stated that crime is down 23% in Kenosha, but yet, calls for service have increased by 8,000 calls.  “Usually,” he said, “when calls for service go down, crime goes down, and when calls for service go up, crime goes up.”  Marchesini spoke to the benefits of a neighborhood watch group.  “We played games for a long time.  We had no tools to work with.  It took a couple of years, but it’s now good.  We’ve gotten rid of problem people.  Things are in order now.  It used to be a big group.  But now that things are quiet, no one wants to participate.  This is not the way to do it.”

Francis continued, “We have a (neighborhood watch) group on either side of the school.  There is power in numbers.  Call us, don’t hesitate.  There were two houses on 33rd Street that were causing problems.  We made arrests, there were people put in prison, then they came back.  One house on the other side of the school was a gang/drug hangout.  Some of these houses are owner-occupied.  There’s a civil law that Alderperson Nudo was instrumental in implementing.  It’s a novel idea in Kenosha, but it’s been used quite often in Milwaukee.  The State statute allows a house to be designated as a problem.  Then, circuit court can accept a suit from the city and get an order if they can prove it.  It’s like a restraining order.  There are certain restrictions placed on the house.  If they are not followed, violations are issued.  It takes a while.  But, if people don’t have common decency, then so be it.”

Neighbors discussed neighborhood problems such as gangs, drug houses, garbage in alleys, loitering, dilapidated properties, seagulls on top of the Chrysler building, speeders at night, etc.

Francis told the group that they have a 95% success rate when calling landlords of rental properties when there is a problem.  “Get the exact address,” Francis stated.  “Call us for anything.”  Both officers left their cards on the table for neighbors to take with them.  They can be reached on (262) 657-3937.  The e-mail address is:  watch@kenoshapolice.com.  For a sheet with Kenosha Police Department citizen contact telephone numbers, click here:  KPD Citizen Contact Telephone Numbers.  Please keep it handy in case you need to make a call.

Both officers thanked the neighbors who were already a part of a neighborhood watch group.  If you already have a neighborhood watch group set up in your neighborhood, and if you are not a member, please consider becoming one.  If you do not have a neighborhood watch group in your neighborhood, consider forming one.  Call the crime prevention officers for more information.

Nudo then discussed other neighborhood issues:   snow plow problems (the city now has GPS tracking on the snow plows, so call if you have a problem), the proposed Wal-Mart store (no application has been submitted yet), the old Wal-Mart store (owned by a real estate investment trust in California, the building is for sale or lease), the Chrysler site (a big project, it will take $40 to $60 million to clean up the site and demolition permits will need to be pulled to transport the debris), voting poll changes (citizens will receive letters from the city clerk’s office informing them of new polling places), and the establishment on 52nd Street and 31st Avenue (opened on January 4th as a restaurant bar with a beer/wine license).

The safety tip of the day was:  Don’t go out and start your car and leave it running.  One of the ladies at the meeting said that she did just that a couple of weeks ago.  She left her car running, warming it up for about 30 seconds, unlocked, and it was stolen.  Francis’ comment was that doing this is a violation in the city of Kenosha.

 

 

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