Crime is OUR problem. And, to minimize the incidents around Ambergris Caye, residents have banded together to form Neighborhood Watches which will keep vigil over various areas across the island. Today, there are five neighborhood watches actively working together to get the job done. A meeting, between Presidents of all five watches, Elito Arceo of the San Pedro Business Association and Steve Spiro, Chairman of the Ambergris Caye Education and Support Committee (ACES), was held at Mayor Elsa Pazs office on April 3rd, 2008.
At the end of the meeting, a new Board of Directors for the islands Neighborhood Watch groups was set up, in cooperation with Mayor Elsa Paz and Assistant Superintendent Officer in Charge (OIC) of San Pedro Town Dennis Arnold.
The Board consists of: Area Representative and Minister of Tourism Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr., Mayor Elsa Paz, OIC Dennis Arnold, President of the Chamber of Commerce Tom Vidrine, Elito Arceo, ACES committee members and all the respective Presidents.
Neighborhood Watch Presidents include:
*San Mateo, Boca del Rio, San Juan Area open for a President
Mayor Elsa Paz is currently working on setting up a Neighborhood Watch in the Town Core.
In an interview with The San Pedro Sun, Officer in Charge Dennis Arnold stated that there are four officers attached to each neighborhood watch. These officers will be working closely with the group and their presidents. They will be the first line of communication and it will be their responsibility to assist people in their respective areas. The following is the list of officers and their respective cellular numbers.
*San Pedrito Airstrip Roberto Castillo (610) 2624 or firstname.lastname@example.org
*Town Area to Banyan Bay Forrest Jones (610) 4550, (226) 3550 or email@example.com
*DFC Area, San Pablo, Escalante Subdivision Jules Escalante (661) 0499 or firstname.lastname@example.org
*North Division Tammy Peterson (626) 3557 or email@example.com
San Mateo, Boca del Rio, San Juan Area
1. W/CPL# 834 S. Robateau (604) 1103
2. CPL# 731 Alejandro Romero (607) 9109
3. PC# 1054 Nelson Phillips (665) 6586
4. PC# 1085 Gonzalo Correa (620) 1085
San Pedrito Airstrip Area
1. SGT# 358 Leslie Wade (622)6974
2. WPC# 1107 Bernadette Ramos (226) 2022
3. PC# 278 Mark Martinez (600) 2542
4. PC# 519 Nathaniel Lopez (226) 2022
Town Area Banyan Bay
1. SGT# 714 Paulino Reyes (623) 3471
2. CPL# 900 Dwayne McCulloch (626) 3929
3. PC# 891 Jason Shaw (625) 0145
4. PC# 31151 Briceρo Shal (226) 2022
DFC Area San Pablo and Escalante Subdivision
1. (ASP) Dennis Arnold (601) 9586
2. D/CPL# 110 Marlon Biazer (607) 5610
3. PC# 1059 Aaron Usher (668) 1108
4. PC# 650 Johnny Tun (226) 2022
North Divison Over the Bridge
1. SGT# 503 Isais Sanches (600) 9113
2. PC# 225 Randy Lyons (604) 7071
3. PC# 1154 Cedric Suazo (226) 2022
4. PC# 469 J. Gongora (226) 2022
The purpose of the Neighborhood Watch is to provide citizens with the ability to help reduce local opportunities for crime, and make the area a safer community to live in. There are several ways the Board will go about doing this, but their success relies on people in the community. They will work to establish and maintain a partnership with all sections of our community; build and strengthen cooperation; adapt, implement, and be proactive in approaches; assist individuals and groups to solve problems; provide guidance, education and support; provide opportunities for sharing information; will promote a better understanding of the role of the police in the community; and help to maintain open lines of communication between the police department and the citizens.
A monthly general meeting of all neighborhood watch Presidents will be held the first Thursday of every month at the Mayors office. Please contact your President to join your areas Neighborhood Watch Association. Membership is free. All we ask is that you go to a monthly meeting and participate. Margaret Mead once said, Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, its the only thing that ever has. Voice your concerns, offer solutions and assistance, reap the rewards, and be a part of the change!