North Heights sees improvements from city, patrolmen

North Heights sees improvements from city, patrolmen
Hegwood and Ofc. Smith play with Carver ECA students after school / Source: KFDA
Hegwood and Ofc. Smith play with Carver ECA students after school / Source: KFDA

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Residents of Amarillo's North Heights said their Community Improvement Plan (CIP) has now started making positive changes in that neighborhood.

Two neighborhood patrol officers have been stationed in North Heights since August, And the CIP went into affect in January.

Now, residents and officers are working together to improve that community.

Cpl. Clay Hegwood and Ofc. Daniel Smith have become familiar faces in North Heights.
   
"When we're out on our bikes we get flagged down all the time," said Hegwood. "Everybody wants to talk to us and we've made a lot of contacts. People are calling us with things they wouldn't have called us for before."

Those are things like sewage and maintenance problems, loose animals and other public nuisances.

The two patrol the area daily as part of the Neighborhood Police Unit, and said most people in the area like them being there.

"Things are a lot better everywhere since we got them out here and we got the new chief," said Mary C. Jones, a lifelong North Heights resident. "The whole neighborhood feels safer."

The people who don't like the police presence and other changes are the troublemakers, Smith said.

"Some of them are involved in criminal activity and having the police around is not good for business."

The officers are also involved with the CIP, and said the city is already making changes by adding crosswalks, stop signs and fixing up the area.

"There are a lot of neighbors who are very proud of their neighborhood and they don't like seeing it decline like it has over the years," said Smith.

But what people seem to notice the most is how much safer they feel knowing police are always present.

"You just tell them what the problem is and they will get it solved," said Jones. "And I thank them for what they do."

Hegwood and Smith invite anyone in North Heights to visit them at their office at St. John's Baptist Church at 2301 NW 14th Ave.

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