Residents in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood stop criminal activity

Block clubs and communication produce results

CLEVELAND - Residents living in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood step up to play a key role in the arrest of three suspects, caught at two separate crime scenes.

Residents responded to a bank robbery at the Chase Bank at West 67th and Detroit Road Tuesday. According to police, one resident followed the suspects as they left the bank, keeping a safe distance, while calling 911.

The residents gave police a detailed description and location of the suspects, allowing investigators to make a quick arrest without incident.

"If you see something, you have to report it," said Cleveland Councilman Matt Zone. "Residents saw something and they reported it, and within a half hour the juveniles were arrested."

But the bank robbery wasn't the only crime to strike Matt Zone's Ward 15 neighborhood. Ten minutes later, residents called in another crime in progress.

A Detroit-Shoreway block club member contacted Safety Coordinator Jessica Dillworth about a burglar attempting to break into a home on Tillman Avenue.

Dillworth took the description and information, and immediately called police. Investigators were at the scene in minutes and made an arrest.

"I'm extremely proud of our residents," said Dillworth. "It never ceases to amaze me, the communication among the residents."

Dillworth helps to coordinate the Detroit-Shoreway Community Development Corporation's 13 block clubs , and its numerous foot-patrols.

"Residents communicate among themselves, and collaborate with police, and our councilman's office. It's all about communication sharing," said Dillworth.

Councilman Matt Zone stressed the importance of community involvement in improving northeast Ohio neighborhoods, and praised NewsChannel5's Building Better Neighborhoods initiative in promoting residents to take action.

"The whole concept behind Building Better Neighborhoods, I'm glad TV-5 is really doing a focus on the housing stock, and trying to make it better," said Zone. "But a key component to that is the people who live around the houses and neighborhoods."

"This is our neighborhood we just can't rely on the police to help us make the neighborhoods safer, we need the residents."

NewsChannel5 invites residents to take action by volunteering, and reporting vacant/condemned homes through its NewsChannel5 Building Better Neighborhoods initiative .

Residents are encouraged to send in pictures and information on distressed properties to our Troubleshooter Facebook or Twitter accounts @joeonyourside. Report a home using your smartphone and our free NewsChannel5 app.

If you're dealing with a vacant home in your neighborhood, use the Cleveland Housing Court Vacant Home Toolkit to guide you through the process of moving a vacant home to progress step by step.

NewsChannel5 will bring you a series of reports and updates on the progress made through the Building Better Neighborhoods initiative throughout 2012.

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