Police share public safety tips
Dravosburg Mayor Michelle Vezzani hopes a series of community crime watch presentations will keep residents informed about public safety.
The borough isn't forming a traditional crime watch with formal board meetings, but rather is facilitating community awareness about public safety issues.
McKeesport Police Department presented its third quarterly program on Wednesday evening, and Vezzani said she hopes participation will grow.
The first presentation brought more than 50 residents last summer, when an increase in burglaries prompted concern. A presentation on narcotics this winter drew only a handful.
Wednesday's topic was identity theft, and approximately 20 attended. The group consisting mostly of senior citizens said the issue is important.
“It's timely with what has happened at Target and Neiman Marcus (with customer information being accessed illegally),” resident Pat Toth said. “All of our information is out there. Any time you use a credit card, it's like open season.”
McKeesport Detective Joe Osinski defined identity theft as any unauthorized access to or use of another person's information. He encouraged attendees to protect themselves online and in public places.
In keeping with that theme, the borough plans to offer free document shredding on April 19.
“We try to get out with different topics and give you as much information as we can,” Osinski said.
Vezzani said she needs public input to gear presentations toward the community's needs.
“We want people to come, and we want people to learn,” Vezzani said. “We need your suggestions to make this successful.”
Based on some suggestions, McKeesport police may address women's self-defense and gun safety.
“Our goal is to create public awareness of crime to reduce the vulnerability of victims and to establish a police-community relationship,” McKeesport Chief Bryan J. Washowich said.
The department is willing to develop presentations based on need and concern, the chief added.
Dravosburg Volunteer Fire Department No. 1 may offer fire safety tips, including information about smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
Residents asked if programs could go outside the scope of public safety to include health and wellness or financial stability.
Glassport Crime Watch co-chairs Angelo Norelli and David Kowalski attended Dravosburg's meeting to see what was happening in their neighboring borough, and they said attendance should increase with more exposure.
“When we started, it was all senior citizens just like this,” Norelli said. “We're starting to get young people now. We have 40-50 at every meeting, and people are interested in our activities.”
Jennifer R. Vertullo is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1956, or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- McKeesport’s Lake Emilie ready for trout season
- McKeesport teen murder suspect nabbed in sweep
- South Allegheny High School uses laser tool to enlighten students
- Lawmakers address education issues
- Driver hospitalized in 837 crash
- Officials pledge to monitor Munhall outreach ministry transition facility
- McKeesport woman pleads guilty to forgery, insurance fraud
- Business owners see pros, cons to Lincoln Way widening in White Oak