Highland at Rogers Ranch Block Watch is the new group page that I set up for our neighbors to communicate about issues important to them in regard to the block watch and other neighborhood concerns. As some of my close friends and family can attest, I've made this something of a mission in the last month.
Crime has suddenly spiked in our area, where we previously had none to speak of. A year ago, you could search on the crime maps at www.azcentral.com (and other sites) and see nothing at all of significance. Now, however, it's a different story, with a sudden onslaught of burglaries, home invasions, shootings, kidnappings, large-scale drug busts, and other activities that you would expect more out of a slum than a nice middle class neighborhood.
Beginning in mid-March, apparently, several groups began targeting all of us suburbanites for these types of crimes. According to a reliable source, the police caught part of one such group that had been targeting newer neighborhoods in Laveen, Chandler, and Gilbert. And whether fortunately or not remains to be seen, but it was in the neighborhood directly east of us that they made the arrest last month. This is in the same span of time that we've seen some shocking stories of home invasions, kidnappings, and drop houses nearby.
It seems that a couple of high profile and/or disruptive incidents have finally made people more aware of a serious threat, and our community has decided that we will not be an easy target. Of 157 homes in our subdivision, Catherine and I got 32 people to sign up for the formal block watch, along with several others expressing interest. This is merely the beginning, but it's been a huge success so far. I can promise more good news soon (and hopefully no more bad news).