More streets signing up for Madison neighborhood watch

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MADISON, Ala. - More neighbors in Madison are signing up to keep an eye on one another. Police say more streets are joining the neighborhood watch.

Homeowners on Brentwood and Lewter Drive are the newest streets to join the watch. The signs are free, so is the training. Madison police even inspect your block to look for potential weak spots.

"We check for things like lighting. Lights may be out. Garage doors left open, unsecured doors, things like that," Madison Police Department community resource officer Teresa Taylor-Duncan said.

Rene McGinty is pleased her neighbors are becoming more vigilant.

"It looks like someone just took a wood chisel and rammed it through," Madison resident Rene McGinty said she isn't sure who vandalized her mailbox. She's lived on the quiet and wooded Brentwood Drive for over 40 years.

"For a long time, people weren't even aware this street existed," McGinty said.

Rene now has a few more neighbors. Fortunately for her, and her mailbox, her street is the newest road to sign up for the neighborhood watch.

"When everybody's looking, then you have a better chance of noticing these things," McGinty said.

"Criminals don't want to go into a home or break into a car on a main roadway," Taylor-Duncan said.

Taylor-Duncan says forming a watch group is as simple as writing down your neighbor's phone numbers and asking them to keep an eye on your house while you're out of town.

"This isn't a full-time commitment. It doesn't require anyone to carry guns. It doesn't require anyone to be on patrol or walk the streets in the middle of the night," Taylor-Duncan said.

The efforts are some simple methods police and neighbors hope will deter any would-be criminals. If you live in Madison and want to find out how to sign up for a neighborhood watch group, you can call Madison police at (256) 722-5676.

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