Neighborhood Watch should not carry guns
I am writing in regard to the July 28 letter titled, “Neighborhood watch needs identifying uniforms.”
The word “armed” does not belong with the term “neighborhood watch patroller.” The Bureau of Justice Assistance, U.S. Department of Justice Neighborhood Watch Manual, prepared by the National Sheriffs’ Association, states: “It should be emphasized to members that they do not possess police powers and they shall not carry weapons or pursue vehicles.”
Going one step further, while they may wear identifying clothing such as hats or vests, in New York State they cannot wear badges that appear similar to law enforcement or peace officer badges. So only a rectangular or square “badge” would be permitted.
People wishing to organize or become involved in a Neighborhood Watch program should contact their local police agency.