Local News

Foot Patrols Hope to Help Distressed Neighborhood

Posted January 24, 2007

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— Massey Hill today is a neighborhood notorious for crime, stray animals and substandard homes. Once, it was a thriving mill community.

Fayetteville police and community leaders are trying to take back Massey Hill by fighting trouble before it starts, putting officers, other city workers and county officials on the streets rather than waiting to be called.

Officer Kellie Berg was on foot in the neighborhood Wednesday. She was on a new shift, but she was on familiar turf, knocking on familiar doors and seeing lots of the same old problems. The goal was to deliver a message in a neighborhood.

"As soon as we leave, they just converge back in the area. So we just let them know that we have zero tolerance," Bergh said as she surveyed the area.

Derrick Bledsoe remembers better days.

“We played in the streets, played basketball in the street, walked the streets. (There was) no issue at all,” Bledsoe said.

The mills that made Massey Hill thrive have long shut down. Current residents say they wonder if their new era of crime and poverty can ever come to an end.

Bledsoe seemed dubious Wednesday.

"I think it's just a show. It's just a show," he said as he swept leaves on the sidewalk and in the street in front of his house.

Police said the show is a show of concern for the community. They brought along Animal Control officers to make sure pets aren't wandering about.

Jean Bolton is a member of Massey Hill’s community watch.

"We were the working class in the city of Fayetteville, the seed of Fayetteville. It's important to us—those of us who remember those days—to get it back."

Police said they will continue their neighborhood sweep through Friday and plan to do walk-throughs of Massey Hill on a regular basis.


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  • Punky Jan 25, 2007

    The residents need to quit being lazy, get out of the house and they themselves should walk the street. Drug dealers and criminals don't like being noticed. Clean up the area, have the citizens work with the government instead of vice versa. Educate the citizens on how to reduce crime in their neighborhood. The police can only do so much. There are many more citizens then there are police. This plan they have sounds good but they are wasting their time if the entire community dosen't support change.

  • emory24 Jan 25, 2007

    I hope this works......one could get some fixer upper property there quite cheap.......area in good location.

  • narck9 Jan 24, 2007

    I am sure that these foot patrols will totally restore calm back in the neighborhood. Parents will start raising their children as they should, drug dealers will leave, the people will get off the couch and throw away their 40oz. 211's and get a job, boys will wear their pants above their a$$ and the community will thrive! Yeah right. No amount of police force will stop thugs from committing crime. The war on crime starts with a father and mother at home showing a kid right from wrong.

  • DOG Jan 24, 2007

    I was surprised to read that Massey Hill was in Fayetteville. I would have thought it was in Durham.