On a Friday afternoon, Golden Valley resident Molly Warden spent some time doing one of the more mundane tasks in life
"Getting the yard in shape, mowing," she said.
But doing this necessary chore also allows her to keep a watchful eye on the neighborhood.
"Just because of the park," Warden said. "And then we have a lot of retired or single adults on the block, so you just kinda want to watch out for them because they're by themselves."
That being said, Warden classifies her Golden Valley neighborhood as "safe."
"We've been really safe," she said. "There's been very few things. I think my neighbors had something taken out of their garage once, but their garage was open."
While many residents say that the city is safe, Golden Valley police say that they've seen an increase in residential burglaries this year, which is just one reason why they're trying to get more people involved in the neighborhood watch program."
"We have to partner with the residents," said Golden Valley Police Chief Stacy Carlson. "They are the people in the neighborhoods 24/7."
Chief Carlson says her department does nine neighborhood watch meetings a year, but recently she's noticed a change.
"We're seeing less people to come to the neighborhood watch meetings," she said. "And those meetings are where we go over the crime that's happened in that area over the last year and other questions and tips that people bring up."
Tips such as keeping your garage door closed. Yet now, police are using a survey to get more people involved in neighborhood watch groups.
"Just to talk about what is the best way for us to deal with you and your neighborhood groups, how do you prefer to receive information, what kind of information do you want to receive, and what can we do better?" Carlson said.
All information that will help police – and neighbors – keep Golden Valley safe.
"I've been very cognizant about locking the doors and putting the garage doors down even when we're home because, it's just, you never know," Warden said.
Police say that it doesn’t take much to be a part of a neighborhood watch group. If you're a Golden Valley resident who wants information on how to get involved, call the Golden Valley Police Department at 763-593-8079.
July 20, 2012