The residents of Roswell had an opportunity to meet then-new Roswell Chief of Police Phil Smith in November. That event was hosted by the Roswell Neighborhood Watch organization, and was held at the Roswell High School Little Theatre. While attendance was not as large as many anticipated, it was a good and worthwhile activity, with approximately 75 in attendance.
Before that meeting in November, publicity mostly revolved around the benefits of setting up a Neighborhood Watch in the various neighborhoods around town. It is certain that no police force can ever have officers on every corner, and so it becomes important for residents to watch out for each other.
Steve Wolfe, an adviser for Neighborhood Watch, commented that “we should know about our neighbors — what cars they drive, who their kids are, what their work habits are, and what is normal in our neighborhood. By knowing some of those types of things, we can play an important part in the safety of our immediate community.”
There will be another similar event with the police chief at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, this time at the Boys & Girls Club of Roswell, located at 201 S. Garden Ave. This particular meeting, however, is more focused on giving residents an opportunity to meet Chief Smith, rather than on the intricacies of setting up a watch organization.
Since he has now been on the job for a few months, it is likely that the chief has formed some more distinct thoughts and ideas concerning crime and safety in Roswell.
Attending this meeting, which has been encouraged by Chief Smith, will enable citizens to hear and participate firsthand.
Richard Lucero, an adviser to Neighborhood Watch, retired RPD commander, and lifetime resident of Roswell, encourages people from all parts of the city to attend.
“Crime affects all of us in the community,” he says, “No matter where we live, if we are proactive, we can impact that crime. Participating in events like this is beneficial to us individually and as a city.”
Wolfe and Lucero echo their intent for this meeting to be a citywide gathering. To further facilitate an exchange of ideas, there will be a bilingual translator available for questions to the chief and for the answers he may provide.