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Anderson resident working with police to start neighborhood watch program

Theft and vandalism on the rise

ANDERSON, Mo. - Over the last few months, Anderson resident Shannon Brewer has grown more and more careful. 

"I've got an eight-camera system on my house," says Brewer. "I'm very much about cameras."

He's also started locking the doors to the cars on his new car lot. 

All of which have been prompted by an increase in acts of vandalism and thefts in town. 

"Vehicle break-ins, vehicle thefts, vandalism, shoplifting. I didn't think it was as bad during springtime and summer, but for the most part, the holiday season tends to bring more cases like that," says Captain Arron Lemon with the Anderson Police Department. 

Lemon says the police department investigates the crimes, but many of them aren't reported until well after the fact. 

"We get cases where people don't report something stolen for a week or longer," says Lemon. "I've been told that people don't like calling 911, people don't like getting the police involved. That does make it harder to try to find out who did it."

Brewer is now on a mission to get residents working together to slow the trend. 

He's working with the Anderson Police Department to start a neighborhood watch program. 

"They don't have to be just walking around town looking for criminals. But be more attentive to the things that are going on around you," says Brewer. 

Residents who decide to join will be trained on what to watch for, when it's a good time to call police about suspicious activity, and the differences between calling the non-emergency line and 911. 

Brewer hopes the program will make more residents comfortable with the idea of calling the police. 

"Most people don't realize how amazing the city of Anderson is," says Brewer. "Of course, there's always gonna be something, but if people would get more interactive, it could actually help the police department solve a lot of cases."

There will be a public meeting for anyone wanting to join the neighborhood watch at some point in January. 

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