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Pembroke residents, with guidance from interim Pembroke Police Chief Stacy Strickland, are forming a group called the Neighborhood Protection objective.

Strickland said his vision for the program consists of neighbors watching out for neighbors and a way Pembroke residents could give back to a community that has given so much.

More than 25 residents have signed up to participate so far, according to NPO secretary Kellie Kuntz.

"Together, Chief Strickland and I have worked hard to get to the point where we are," Kuntz said. "I want to follow the vision he has because I think it’s an excellent idea."

Kuntz, a resident of Pembroke for more eight years, said she is excited about the program and the response received since the program was officially started in February. She said she’s seen a lot of changes for the worse in Pembroke.

"A lot has changed," Kuntz said. "So much criminal activity is going on now. I want to help make the area safer for all of our children."

Strickland said he’s seen many successful neighborhood watch programs in his experience as a patrol officer.

"In the successful programs, communities work alongside police to diminish crime," he said. "I want the neighborhood Protection objective to be that, and so much more."

Strickland said the program is a joint public safety effort among local fire and police authorities, and a way those agencies and residents can take back the streets (from crime).

For more information about the group contact Strickland or Pembroke Police Administrator Jennifer Baxter at 653-4414, or organization secretary Kellie Kuntz at 653-2525.

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