ST. CLOUD (WJON News) - The St. Cloud Police Department has launched a new program focused on those who like to take their dogs for a walk through the neighborhood.

Dog Walker Watch is a new program developed to teach those who know their neighborhood best basic crime prevention tips, tools, and information to help them identify potential problems in their community.

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St. Cloud Police Sergeant Tad Hoeschen says the goal of the program is to build a relationship with the dog owners who are out in the community every day.

The goal of this program is to empower our neighbors who are out there every day, who see things in their neighborhood who know what may seem a little suspicious, and empower them. (The goal is to) collaborate with them and get to know them as they get to know us and continue to work together with one another.

Throughout the year, the Dog Walker Watch will receive tips on:

  • Reporting suspicious activity,
  • Tips for preventing crime,
  • Burglary prevention,
  • Cameras and alarms,
  • Severe weather safety.

Hoeschen hopes the program will help dog walkers be safe when out in the community, and know what to do in an emergency.

So topics such as situational awareness, even looking at folks that are experiencing a mental health crisis, and some things to do and some things to not do. When to call 911, when to utilize the nonemergency number. Topics like that, or anything that people (have) experienced or witnessed and things that they would like to discuss.

The kickoff event is Thursday, May 30th, 6:30 p.m. at the St. Cloud Police Department. Bring your dogs and learn more.

The program is free, but pre-registration is encouraged. To register, find the link here.


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