Gwinnett CID sees reduction in crime again

NORCROSS - The Gwinnett Village Community Improvement District's westside precinct recorded a third consecutive year of double digit crime reduction.

Just because crime is on the downswing, the group is not about to get complacent. In fact, it is becoming more vigilant with the announcement the CID is ready to begin implementing the third phase of its targeted enforcement zone program, which provides dedicated, private security patrols and additional police protection to the Gwinnett Village area.

"We are pleased with the results of two years of crime reduction efforts by Gwinnett County and the city of Norcross," said the CID's Executive Director Chuck Warbington. "And we want to build upon that success with additional eyes and ears on the street."

Warbington said since the program ramped up in 2006 vehicle break-ins, motor vehicle theft and commercial burglaries in the CID have declined 22, 21 and 10 percent annually. He said the program started with security patrols and paid police officers and will expand this year to include continuous patrol by four security patrol vehicles that will monitor the CID area seven days a week. Specialized Intelligence and Security (SIS) was contracted for the job and Warbington said the CID has budgeted $450,000 for all three phases of the program in 2009.

Mark Lemke, a public information officer for SIS, said his security officers are hoping to make a real impact in the area.

"Our ultimate goal is to act as a crime deterrent by being as visible as possible in the community," he said.

The program earned praise from Gwinnett County Chairman Charles Bannister.

"Gwinnett County is becoming a safer place to live and work and the Gwinnett Village is no exception," Bannister said. "County government is working successfully with our CID's to keep reducing violence, gang activity, drug dealing and property crimes."

Warbington said he's so far pleased with the program and the results it has produced, and said property owners in the corridor should rest assured that Southwestern Gwinnett is becoming a safer and better place to conduct business.

"Gwinnett Village security will continue to be our top priority for 2009," he said.