WARREN COUNTY, N.C. — Patrolling the waters without a boat can be pretty tough for law enforcement. Warren County Sheriff Johnny Williams has never had a boat to help combat water crimes committed on Lake Gaston, but the public is pitching in to give the sheriff the tools he needs.
"It's a great asset to have these people come in, come back and retire in Warren County. We need to go with the flow," Warren County Sheriff Johnny Williams said.
Growth also means an increase in crime. Thieves looted a home, leaving nothing behind but the refrigerator.
Vandals can approach a waterfront home in two ways by land or from the water. Those crimes on the water has left the sheriff vulnerable. Warren County does not own a boat for law enforcement.
Hartley is leading the effort by a couple of Lake Gaston merchants to raise money to buy the sheriff a boat.
"It will cause the waters to be safer. That's key to me," community watch captain Al Hartley said.
New homes are not the only thing going up in the area. Community watch program signs are also popping up in the area. Williams also plans to divide the county into three districts to improve response time to 911 calls.