Athens County Property Crimes Task Force

By: Abbie Schrader Email
By: Abbie Schrader Email

Nearly two dozen burglaries in Athens County in the last month alone.

A scary statistic for the community and the Property Crimes Task Force, and now they look to the community for help.

Athens County has seen over twenty burglaries since the end of April and it's not something law enforcement is taking lightly.

Tuesday evening the Athens County Property Crimes Task Force held a meeting in Athens to discuss what the region has been experiencing with property crime over the last few months.

"Ninety percent of crime is related to drugs and here we're trying to help people protect themselves," says Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn.

Blackburn along with the Athens County Sheriff, Athens Chief of Police and Ohio University Police Chief addressed the dozens of community members on what they can do to prevent themselves from becoming a victim of property crime and what to do when they see a crime happening.

"Community watch is the first step in communicating with neighbors and so those groups are working to get information to us and allow us to get information to them about how to better protect themselves," says Blackburn.

Community watch leaders say anytime you see something suspicious, call the police.

"Law enforcement can't be everywhere and somebody in the community is. And if the community watches, law enforcement can do their job," says Bill Russell.

After spending more than thirty years behind bars, a past offender spoke to those in attendance on what criminals look for when burglarizing a home, also how he's adjusting back into society.

"I think we're making a strong effort and changes in the way that we're treating offenders and getting them help for drug treatment and I think we're making great progress," says Blackburn.

Prosecutor Blackburn plans to hold another task force meeting sometime in September.

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