By Amanda Rogers
The Mansfield police want you to step outside – for National Night Out on Tuesday.
“The gist is neighborhoods and communities coming together and getting to know each other, talking about crime prevention and what they can do to make their neighborhood safer,” explained Trey Kerr, community resource officer for the Mansfield Police Department.
Begun 38 years ago, National Night Out has spread to all 50 states and held annually in August, except in Texas, where it’s held in October.
Twenty events are currently planned across Mansfield, Kerr said.
“Some are keeping it smaller, just socializing, while others are having bounce houses, petting zoos and catered meals,” he said. “It’s fun to have a party, but the focus is getting to know your neighbors.”
Knowing the neighbors is an important part of crime prevention, Kerr said.
“What I see as a police officer as completely normal may not be,” he said. “A senior citizen walking at 11:30 p.m. is not normal. It’s not always about crime, especially in Mansfield.”
Neighbors watching what goes on can stop crime or help catch criminals, Kerr pointed out.
“Years ago in another city, a family went on vacation and a truck pulled up and opened their garage,” he said. “They parked the truck in the garage and completely emptied the house in several trips.
“I talked to the neighbors and got enough information to catch the criminals,” Kerr said. “One noticed the color of the truck, another said the guy hit his head on the hanging flower basket. All the things together were enough for us to know who they were.
“There are so many positive things that can come out of this,” Kerr said of National Night Out. “This is the perfect excuse to meet your neighbors. For police officers, it gives us a chance to build relationships in a positive environment.”
To register an event for National Night Out, contact Kerr at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mansfield, Texas, is a booming city, nestled between Fort Worth and Dallas, but with a personality all its own. The city’s 76,247 citizens enjoy an award-winning school district, vibrant economy, historic downtown, prize-winning park system and community focus spread across 37 square miles. The Mansfield Record is dedicated to reporting city and school news, community happenings, police and fire news, business, food and restaurants, parks and recreation, library, historical archives and special events. The city’s only online newspaper launched in September 2020 and will offer introductory advertising rates for the first three months at three different rates.