Goshen hosts neighborhood watch meeting after burglaries

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, February 13, 2019

After a rash of burglaries in Goshen recently, more than 60 residents gathered at Town Hall Tuesday night for a neighborhood watch meeting hosted by Sheriff Russell Thomas.

“I appreciate each and every one of you for showing up,” said Mayor Darren Jordan. “It shows that you’re concerned not just  about yourself, but your neighbor as well. We’ve had some issues around here lately and I promised that I want to keep our community the way it has always been as long as I could. It’s my obligation to do what I can to inform the citizens and talk to the sheriff to make the community a little safer and the way it was.”

Thomas said the 64 people in attendance is the largest neighborhood watch meeting he has ever had.

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The sheriff informed the residents that the recent crimes were still being investigated, but he is hopeful that the issue is almost taken care of.

“I know you’re concerned about what’s going on in your community; I’m concerned,” Thomas said. “Most of the time we start with nothing, we’re looking for invisible man, woman. We have had some burglaries in the county not far from here: two at (a nearby residence) where guns, TVs, tools and different things were taken. Across (U.S. Highway) 29 we had a burglary where three guns were taken. On Christmas Eve we had three TVs taken. We solved all of those this week and have most of the property back other than one gun, one TV and a five-gallon tank of gas.”

Thomas shared stories about how seemingly small bits of evidence helped solve cases in the county and gave tips for residents to protect themselves and help curb crime in the community.

“You know what belongs, what vehicles belong in what place,” Thomas said. “You’re not being nosy, you’re being cautious. Call us and let us check it out. If there’s nothing to it, that’s fine, but it may be tied to something that occurred in the past few weeks. If you see something, say something. We depend on y’all to be our eyes and our ears, to be our partners.”

Thomas said drugs are related to 85 percent or more of the office’s calls.

“As drug culture gets stronger, the users are either selling drugs or they’re stealing,” Thomas said.

Some of Thomas’ tips included having lighting around the home, installing a security system, including cameras. And he advised neighbors to watch out for each other, because any identification can help solve a case.