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Phoenix neighborhood watch group retiring after 18 years of service

In this image provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, the USGS's 2107 earthquake forecast map. Federal scientists forecast that Oklahoma will continue to have the nation's biggest man-made earthquake problem but it probably won't be as shaky as recent years. In its annual national earthquake outlook, the USGS reported Wednesday, March 1, 2017, that a large portion of Oklahoma and parts of central California have the highest risk for a damaging quake this year: between 5 and 12 percent. The outlook is published in the journal Seismological Research Letters. (U.S. Geological Survey via AP)

They’ve been patrolling our streets for 18 years, but they’re calling it quits. The Ridge Runner Phoenix Neighborhood Patrol covered a few square miles in north Phoenix as part of the Phoenix Police Neighborhood Patrol Program.

“We’ve just worn down to where we didn’t have enough people to cover any given month,” said Jean Latimer. “And so we just said, ‘Well, okay, it’s time to hang it up.'”

The group patrolled a few square miles near Cave Creek and 7th Street since 1997. Black Mountain Precinct Commander Joe Klima says citizen involvement is what makes Phoenix safer.

“These folks here are one of the best examples of that, where they’ve (been) involved in their community for many, many years,” Kilma said. “It’s just taking a little moment to say ‘thank you,’ and ‘you’ve made a difference.'”

Phoenix Police thanked the group today with a video presentation from Phoenix Police Chief Daniel Garcia. According to police estimates, the volunteer hours and miles the Ridge Runner group logged equate to around $740,000 in man hours. The group asked for nothing in return.


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