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Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, March 2, 2024


Frenchtown is no longer the peaceful little community it used to be. It has grown up and joined the very real world of break-ins and burglaries. A rash of brash burglaries in recent weeks spurred residents to do something.
Director of Crime Prevention Kenneth Blake led a meeting between police and residents at the Frenchtown Community Center Wednesday night, noting that a recent rash of burglaries in the area has made Frenchtown "ripe for a Crime Watch."
Accompanying Blake in the panel discussion was Acting Police Chief Jose Garcia, Assistant Commissioner of Public Safety Bruce Hamlin, and crime prevention officers Eva Lewis and Thomas Olive.
Noting that "communication is the key," Hamlin stressed that without community involvement with the police nothing can be accomplished. Cpl. Eva Lewis described in detail measures to be taken in forming an area watch.
Blake announced that two foot patrol officers would be permanently assigned to Frenchtown in the next two weeks, an announcement enthusiastically received by the 40 or so participants.
Several residents voiced concerns about their particular neighborhoods. Among these was the disposition of the deserted Human Services building at Gregery East. Blake noted plans are afoot to turn it into a gym for local youths run by the Police Athletic League. He encouraged residents to write to their senators to get permission from Human Services to embark on the project.
After individual neighborhood groups are formed, they will be given the Crime Watch sign with the blue eye displayed on it. However, Officer Lewis noted, "that sign will not do the work for you. You are the eye!"

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