A Eunice native is finding a sense of duty after his neighbor was killed while trying to stop burglars. With no suspects in custody, he’s encouraging the community to keep watch.
“There were concerned citizens everywhere. I took the steps and I went ahead and created a group. I involved Deputy Chief Eddie Thibodeaux from St. Landry Crime Stoppers who conjoined and we got the word out there to bring everybody together,” Alex Andrus said.
Andrus says he understands that crime happens but the shooting shook him and the entire community. He says he wants a place where everyone can look out for one another.
That’s why he created the “Eunice Community Watch” Facebook group.
“I’m doing it to spread awareness and alert and to keep everyone aware of what’s going on around their neighborhood. Everybody has a right to know what’s going on,” Andrus said.
Eunice residents can post anything about protecting themselves and their property. Posts range from what kind of security cameras to buy, to things they have seen and heard around town.
Police Chief Randy Fontenot says he supports the group but he reminds residents that they still need to report all crimes to police.
“People will report stuff on Facebook or on messenger and expect the police department to respond to that. Well, we don’t have somebody monitoring those sites all the time. It may be the next day before we see it and then it’s too late to respond. I hope they don’t take this page as something in lieu of reporting it straight to the police,” Fontenot says.
Fontenot and Andrus agree that the page is a valuable resource for the city and its people.
“I just want everyone to come together. As long as we are neighbors, you should know your neighbors. Get to talking to them, that way when you are outside you know who it is and you know that they live there. Then you have a sense of security knowing everything is going to be alright,” Andrus explained.
“Reach out to us. Pay attention to what’s going on. Watch this page, but don’t let it get too far. don’t let it get to your imagination,” Fontenot added.
Next week law enforcement officers will meet with the community to discuss neighborhood safety. The meeting will begin at 6:30 pm on January 24, 2019, at the Liberty Theatre.
Officials hope they can work together with residents to lessen crime and illegal activity in the city.