Local News

Roanoke Rapids Businesses Establish Community Watch

Posted April 3, 2006 6:11 a.m. EDT

— Authorities said businessman Shelby Salmon was murdered in his Roanoke Rapids office in broad daylight. Police officers are promoting a business watch program to prevent other crimes against merchants.

Police officers are dropping in on stores throughout the business district.

"In this case, we want folks to call us and look out for one another. That's the only way it can work," said Roanoke Rapids Police Chief Greg Lawson.

The business watch program is designed to teach merchants the ins and outs of how to spot possible criminal activity and prevent it.

"I would think the extra pair of eyes, extra pair of ears would maybe deter someone who may have decided to try something," said merchant Robert Brown.

Merchants have added security cameras. The business watch program offers each store a free security check from locks to adding more inside lighting after store hours.

"I think it's a wonderful idea, makes us all feel safer," said merchant Joan Long.

"If somebody that's coming into our area and think we're going to be easy, we want to let them know that we are not," Lawson said.

Soon, logos and signs will be posted in storefront windows announcing that businesses are on the alert for crime.

Roanoke Rapids investigators said they have put more than 1,000 hours into the Salmon homicide investigation. There is a $10,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest.