Wildwood Launches Town Watch Program

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WILDWOOD – The City of Wildwood is pleased to announce that a group of concerned residents has organized a Town Watch program. The volunteer effort is designed to help prevent crime and vandalism within Wildwood’s neighborhoods by reporting suspected criminal activities to the Police Department.

“I am elated that these citizens have united with our Police Department to assist in keeping our streets safe,” said Commissioner of Public Safety Anthony Leonetti. “We need the public’s help and cooperation. The more eyes and ears watching and listening, the more information we have to build strong cases against criminals. We simply ask our residents to observe suspicious activities, write down the details and give the information to our detectives and we will take any necessary action.”
Wildwood has a relatively transient population, which makes crime enforcement challenging. Year-round residents know their immediate area and are able to spot suspicious activity. Consequently, the Wildwood Town Watch breaks the town into sectors in which residents are trained to be observant, contact authorities and not to intervene in any way. Approximately 80 people have already volunteered for the program, with a goal of 100 for the busier summer months.
“Our prime focus is to observe and report,” said Town Watch organizer Jill Nailon. “We train our volunteers to recognize suspicious activity and to be observant and attentive to detail in order to give the best possible report to the Police Department. It is critical to our success to have the input and support of the local police and we are very grateful to Commissioner Leonetti and Police Chief Long for their encouragement and help.”
Joe McCarrin, Sue Martin and Bill McGann have joined with Nailon to organize their west-side neighborhood. All live in the area between 26th and Pine Avenues, west of Park Boulevard. They encourage all of Wildwood’s neighborhoods to get involved. Nailon, whose grandparents had a home in North Wildwood, has 8 years of experience in the Town Watch program in Gilbertsville, PA, eventually rising to the rank of president.
“We want to promote old-fashioned neighborly relations,” said Nailon. “Our goal is to promote a sense of safety and security on our streets. We want people to feel safe and happy when they visit our town.”
Wildwood Town Watch meets every 3rd Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the City Commission chambers on the 2nd floor of City Hall, 4400 New Jersey Avenue. Light refreshments are served. For more information, please contact the Wildwood Police Department at 609-522-0222.
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