Residents of Norman and the surrounding area are invited to attend a special program at the Norman Community Center, located at 107 E. Moore St., Norman, on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
“Making Our Homes Burglar Proof” is the topic planned for this discussion, led by Deputy Norvin Forester and Captain Mike Rush of the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.
“There have been several homes (with) windows broken into recently,” wrote former Norman Mayor Jean Stutts in a public notice, “and we feel this information is needed for our community.”
According to Deputy Forester, the program will discuss some of the ways residents can protect themselves and their homes from burglary and other similar crimes.
“We’ll be discussing things homeowners can do to their home to make it a little bit harder for somebody to get in,” Forester said. “The types of locks they should be using on their doors, the types of precautions they can take for windows and sliding glass doors, exterior lighting at their residences, heights of their shrubbery and privacy fencing.”
Forester said he would also discuss personal safety habits that people can practice while they are away from their homes.
“I’m going to be addressing the Community Watch program,” Forester said. “That is, members of the community helping us make their community a safer place to live.”
Sheriff James Clemmons Jr. said that with more than 48,000 people in Richmond County, having the Community Watch program gives people the chance to look out for their neighbors, each other, and report crime in the community.
“Actively we have seven Community Watch programs in Richmond County,” Clemmons said. He added that the Sheriff’s Office is attempting to increase participation in the programs.
Stutts said that, at times, she and other members of the community have seen suspicious behavior in the Norman area.
“I wish we could get the community to pull in together (through a Community Watch program),” Stutts said. “Everyone could start watching their neighbor’s house … I had a break-in in February. My neighbor across the road had one a couple of weeks ago, and I got to thinking, there are so many widows in Norman and the surrounding area, I just thought it would be a good idea to have this meeting.”
Forester encouraged Richmond County residents to contact the Sheriff’s Office any time they need assistance with home security.
“I can do that for anybody that asks,” Forester said. “All they have to do is call and set up an appointment. It’s something that’s free of charge and offered to anybody … whether it be a residence or a business, they can contact the Sheriff’s Office.”
— Staff Writer Mallory Brown can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 16, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.