Cary, N.C. — The Town of Cary is spending nearly $263,000 to help reduce crime in apartment communities.
As part of Project Phoenix, three officers and one lieutenant work with residents and property owners at 26 complexes in the area to keep drugs and illegal activity away.
Up to three times a week, Officer Matt Long visits Woodcreek Apartments to meet with apartment manager Laura Grubbs. Together, they walk the grounds to determine what can be done to improve residents’ safety.
“Today, we talked about the signs and making them bigger and adding some lighting,” Long said.
The changes suggested include making addresses easier to spot from the parking lot and cutting down tall bushes where criminals could hide.
“We just ask that they cut them down to approximately 3 feet so that somebody can’t hide behind them,” Long said.
Another change already made was wide-angle peepholes in all doors. Now, residents can see on the sides as well as in front of the door.
“We’re really taking a proactive response to not only reduce crime, but also try and prevent it,” Lt. Ken Quinlan said.
Officers are assigned to apartment complexes that sign up for the program.
“Residents like the extra police activity. It’s not known as a derogatory thing anymore. They’re out here helping us to stay safe,” Grubbs said.
Long said the rapport developed between the officers and the complexes is helpful.
“The people who live here and other communities feel like they can actually go to the office staff or call us and talk to us,” Long said.
Police said they do not know yet if Project Phoenix has helped reduced crime at apartment complexes in the program. That information should be available by the end of the year.