MEXICO — Residents at Wednesday night’s Neighborhood Watch meeting chose signs to post around town.

Sgt. Tim Haas and Cadet Tim Fitzgerald of the Mexico Explorers program presented four sign designs for residents to choose from.

“We don’t have to make a decision tonight, but I do want to get them out as soon as possible, since spring is coming,” police Chief Roy Hodsdon told residents.

Residents chose an orange sign that states, “Warning: Neighborhood Watch program in progress.”

Hodsdon said he hopes to place signs “on the outskirts” of the town to let people know when they enter Mexico that it’s a Neighborhood Watch community.

Early in the meeting, Hodsdon did an exercise to gauge how well residents notice activities and objects. While Hodsdon was speaking, a member of the Mexico Explorers walked into the room to hand him a stack of papers and left. A few moments later, Hodsdon asked residents to write as many details as they could about the member.

“I’ll just let you know that when we did this in the academy, there were 43 of us that had to do this, and all 43 of us could barely remember anything,” Hodsdon said.

He gave attendees a recent example of how the Neighborhood Watch program has been successful.

“We had one gentleman who called us the other day and said he saw a guy he didn’t recognize loitering around his neighbor’s house,” Hodsdon said. “We looked into the residence and discovered that the man who owned the house had passed away recently.”

Hodsdon said police drove to the house and learned that the man was the deceased man’s son, who was getting items to give to a community home.

“Even though that particular instance was nothing, the son was happy that there were people in the area keeping an eye on the property,” Hodsdon said. “It shows us that the program is working and that people are making an effort to make the area safer.

“I’ve been hearing people around town say that I’m trying to get you guys to do my job for me,” the chief said. “That’s not what this is at all. It’s a way for people to help make their community a little bit safer by being observant. We’re here to educate you.”

Hodsdon said, “Most importantly, we want you to know that there are no stupid calls. If you see something, call us and we’ll check on it.”

Haas and Fitzgerald also gave a presentation on how to improve home safety.

The meeting was hosted by the Police Department and held in its building.

Hodsdon said the next Neighborhood Watch meeting is at 6 p.m. April 16.

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