The Fayetteville police department is taking a smarter approach to make parks and recreation facilities safe.
Officers are increasing monitoring at and also at recreation centers with gyms or other amenities. That monitoring could mean more patrols or other methods that police will not be specific about.
Lt. Todd Joyce said it also means some more attention to parks and recreation facilities that are not in the middle of residential areas where police would normally patrol.
In addition to the monitoring, the police department is sending out surveys in the mail. They want to know what times people use parks and recreation areas the most, and they also want to hear how safe people feel when they visit, and if they have any concerns.
That information will help police figure out if and when some areas need extra attention.
"When you enlist the assistance of folks who are the eyes and ears - when we can't be there - they help us," Joyce said. "They are a great tool that we can use toward policing and crime reduction."
Tommy Daughtry was in General Lee Park in the Haymount area with his grandson Friday. He said some parks do feel safer than others. So he thinks feedback like his could be valuable to police.
"I think it's excellent, especially if it's going to increase the police participation for safety of our parks and local area."
Joyce said the efforts to be smarter about monitoring parks and recreation areas will only work if people respond to their survey. So they really hope anyone in Fayetteville who gets a survey will send it back.
Joyce said some people could receive surveys in the mail next week.
Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon.More>>
Question, comment or news tip? Our desk is happy to take your call and direct you to the appropriate department. Our station phone number is:919-836-1717 Our address is:1205 Front St. Raleigh, N.C.
Question, comment or news tip? The WNCN main desk is happy to take your call and direct you to the appropriate department. Our station phone number is:919-836-1717 Our address is:1205 Front St. Raleigh, N.C.