Melancon warns of burglary spike
ACADIA PARISH - An drastic increase in burglaries in east Acadia Parish - mainly between Rayne and Mire - has authorities working overtime to catch the culprits. Sheriff Wayne Melancon says deputies are investigating a string of burglaries in Acadia Parish.
“Our detectives are currently working approximately seven home burglaries between the Rayne and the Mire area back there” says Melancon.
However, it’s not just Acadia Parish that has seen an increase in property crimes.
“Speaking with our neighboring parishes, Lafayette and Saint Landry, they’re also experiencing a number of daytime burglaries” says Melancon.
Melancon says there used to be a number of neighborhood watch programs in the area of Acadia Parish being hit the hardest by these burglaries, but many have fallen by the wayside. Melancon says residents need to get involved to help solve these crimes.
“What we’re asking is, I guess you might say, be a nosy neighbor. Because you know what truck does belong there, what doesn’t belong there. If you see something, call us.”
Police provide guidance on how to start such programs, but don’t deploy extra officers to help conduct the watch. The burden of sustaining a neighborhood watch is on the residents. Mire resident Gale Johnson says her neighborhood has a system in place to help ward off would be prowlers.
“We would turn on all of our porch lights to let them know that we knew they were out there, and that they didn’t belong there” says Johnson
Jay Bernard lives nearby and had her vehicle robbed while she was out of town earlier this year. She says a neighborhood watch can greatly reduce these break-ins from happening.
“You’re neighbors are right next door, they can help you know, they can be on the lookout and prevent things before they actually happen.”
Though his department is pursuing several promising leads, Melancon emphasizes that public assistance is a vital tool for his department.
“You may help us solve and stop this ring of burglaries, we can get to the bottom of it, make some arrests, and get these urchins off the street.”
If you would like to start a neighborhood watch in Acadia Parish, call the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office at (337) 788-8788.