National Night Out creates trust between law enforcement and com - FOX Carolina 21

National Night Out creates trust between law enforcement and communities

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National Night Out logo (Source: Mauldin PD) National Night Out logo (Source: Mauldin PD)

For more than 30 years, National Night Out has been hosted across the United States. Spartanburg resident and president of the Highland Neighborhood Watch Association, Leroy Jeter, says the community event between law enforcement and neighbors is working.

"Crime is down and reporting of crime is up,” said Jeter.

That’s the biggest asset according to Major Art Littlejohn with the Spartanburg Police Department.

"This is just an opportunity for us to build partnerships and relationships so they understand who the officer is who works their particular neighborhood,” explained Major Littlejohn.

Littlejohn says it may be fun for residents, but it translates to crime prevention and solving based on trust.

"We need the public to trust us and they're our eyes and ears. If they feel more comfortable with talking with us,” said Major Littlejohn, “They're more likely to give us the information we need to solve the crimes."

They hope that trust could help to prevent tragedies like the shooting that left more than 50 people dead and hundreds injured in Las Vegas.

"We are always the ones to help when there's a time of need,” said Major Littlejohn, “The situation that we're dealing with in our country definitely breaks our hearts all the way here in South Carolina."

In Lyman, Chief Jay Hayes hopes their night out will strengthen their ties to the community, in the good times and bad.

"That way they get to know the officers better and they can probably have a little more trust in the officers that serve them,” said Chief Hayes.

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