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Capital Heights considers crime prevention district

11 months 1 week 3 days ago February 08, 2016 Feb 8, 2016 Monday, February 08 2016 February 08, 2016 10:57 PM in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - There are about 20 crime districts in East Baton Rouge Parish and Capital Heights is hoping to create one, too. Capital Heights Neighborhood Association has already begun the process by getting feedback from residents.

Of the people who have replied to a questionnaire posted online, 70% say they are concerned about crime in Capital Heights and are interested in a crime district.

"A lot of people are afraid to go to the grocery store at night," Tyler Hicks says. "A lot of residents have said they would feel a lot better to know that there was extra police protection in our neighborhood."

Two crime prevention options have been proposed: a district covering Capital Heights or a district covering Mid City as a whole.

Forming a crime district would fund private police patrols, additional lighting or cameras. If formed, a board would be appointed to decide how the money collected would be spent. The cost could be anywhere from $75 to $200 per parcel a year.

Tom Poole, who has lived in the neighborhood for nine years, says he has experienced some crime.

"Until we put our fence up, there were problems with things being stolen during the day from our porches even bikes, even though we had them locked up," he explains.

Now with a fence and a dog, Poole says the crime problem has dissolved and while he would agree to pay the extra cost if the price was right, he says right now he doesn't think he needs to.

"I feel pretty safe right now," he said.

CHNA is asking all comments be submitted by March 1. The neighborhood association is hoping to bring put this on the ballot this fall.

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