‘Light Him Up’ campaign a success

No successful break-ins reported during awareness week

MANISTEE — The message of the Light Him Up, Lock Him Out campaign was heard loud and clear.

The campaign, coordinated by the City of Manistee Police Department and Second Street Neighborhood Watch founder Julia Cook, ran from Nov. 1 to 7 in the City of Manistee and was created in response to break-ins over the summer in the city.

It encouraged residents to leave their porch lights on outside their home in an attempt to prevent break-ins in the city.

“We had a lot of participants, and as I drove around, I felt like there was a lot of people out there (that participated),” said David Bachman, City of Manistee public safety director.

He said by the middle of last week, there were no break-ins. There was one attempted break-in on Saturday morning on Ninth Street.

“There were no successful home invasions this week,” he said. “I’m absolutely delighted to hear that.”

Bachman said his neighborhood was lit up well, and every section of the city had more lights on than normal.

He said although the awareness week is over, the tool was effective in terms of crime prevention.

“I’d like to see people keep doing it,” Bachman said. “It’s really more of just being aware of what’s going on around you. If you can take away those opportunities for someone to break in your house, I think it’s a smart move.”

More cars and officers are patrolling the city, he said.

“We’ve changed some shifts around; we’ve got more bodies out there, more cars out there and we know whom we’re looking at,” he said.

Even though the campaign is over, Cook said the conversation about home and personal safety has started in Manistee.

“We’re now having the conversation,” Cook said. “So many people said ‘I lock everything and I’m looking at my neighbor’s house’.”

Bachman said he doesn’t want people to be suspicious of everyone around them, however.

“We don’t want that,” Bachman said. “You’ve got to assume that most people out there are behaving well and doing what they’re supposed to be doing, but there are things you look at (such as) people standing still, hiding and looking in windows.”

Cook echoed Bachman’s sentiments.

“You know what’s normal and what’s not normal,” she said. “I know who lives in the houses. I know who should be coming and going.”

Other lights were on at homes in Filer City and Parkdale, Cook said.

“I think it has made a difference,” she said. “If nothing else, it caused conversation. I do think people are taking back some of their comfort. I think the message is ‘this is our town, this is my property and this is my neighborhood. I want to be part of the solution,’. I think Manistee stepped up.”

After the campaign, both Cook and Bachman said residents who liked having their lights on can continue to do so.

The week-long campaign will take place again in the spring of next year when daylight saving time ends.

avatar

Posted by Sean Bradley

Sean is the city and cops and courts reporter for the News Advocate, he also is in charge of the entertainment and Reasons to Celebrate pages. He can be reached at (231) 398-3109 or sbradley@pioneergroup.com.

Leave a Reply