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Neighbors look to each other to find criminal acts

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By Kayla Swanson

 HILLVIEW - In the past year, the Bullitt County Attorney’s Office has handled 1000 juvenile cases, assistant county attorney Shelly Alvey told Hillview residents at a recent neighborhood watch meeting. 

Because juvenile crime has become a growing concern for the city, the Hillview Neighborhood Watch group hosted Alvey and county attorney Monica Robinson to speak about juvenile law.

Councilwoman Karen Johnson said there were several residents in the audience who had recently had their cars broken into by juveniles. 

The penalty for a juvenile who breaks into a car, Alvey said, depends on the individualís age and prior felonies committed. 

A juvenile that is 14 years old to 16 years old can have a different penalty than one who is 18 years old, depending on the case, but cases involving juveniles under 14 years old are different, Alvey said. 

“The law says that if you’re under 14 you don’t understand criminal intent,” she said. 

Johnson said the neighborhood watch group formed a year ago after resident Michelle Proctor approached the city council about partying in an area of Hillview known as Chronic Hill.

The city’s Public Works department cleaned the area and the watch group began to encourage residents to know their surroundings and know their neighbors. 

Since starting, the group has established several smaller divisions to monitor certain streets in Hillview. 

In addition, the watch group is utilizing its Facebook page to share tips about crime in the area and how residents can keep their homes safe. 

Johnson said that prior to last nights meeting, the page had 765 likes, but believes some of those came from residents of Pioneer Village and Hunters Hollow. 

Mayor Jim Eadens said the problem Hillview faces with juvenile crime isn’t only a problem they face, but one that everyone faces.

“We’re living in troubled times,” he said. 

To find out more about the Hillview Neighborhood Watch group, contact coordinator Mona Thomas at 955-2056, coordinator Serena Jacobs at 939-8273 or visit the group’s Facebook page. 

The Bullitt County Sheriff’s Office also participates in Block Watch training, as well as most of the cities which have police departments.