Aug 20, 2014 11:27 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck
Residents are taking action in St. Landry Parish, when it comes to public safety. About 100 people gathered in Opelousas at Kelly's Diner Wednesday night to address crime in Park Vista Subdivision.
Police said last month, an elderly woman was attacked inside her house during a home invasion. About one week later, four teenagers began knocking on doors and jiggling door handles as a prank. They were charged with criminal mischief, and have since apologized.
"People were running up against our houses at 11:30, hitting on the front door, the glasses rattling, and throwing things at the house. It was very upsetting," said Park Vista resident Billie Casanova, who's lived in the neighborhood for 20 years. After the incident, she received an apology letter.
Opelousas Police Chief Perry Gallow was at the meeting to hear from concerned residents.
"We always have somebody in this area, in the Park Vista area, making sure that everything is ok, and that they're not individuals looking to victimize another citizen," said Opelousas Police Chief Perry Gallow.
Opelousas Police hope that with neighbors watching out for themselves, plus increased patrols, they can reduce crime in the Park Vista area. However, there are other ways, police said, that residents can protect themselves.
"Crimes of opportunity do happen. If you leave your door unlocked, then an individual that's looking around your neighborhood will pull on your door knob to see if the door is unlocked, and attempt to take the valuables inside. So there are some things that you can do as a homeowner in order to protect yourself, and or your neighbor," Gallow said.