Oakland Fights Crime With Senior Citizens

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(Oakland, TN) As brazen crimes against vulnerable elderly people around the Mid-South seem to be increasing, the city of Oakland is fighting crime with a unique group of people.

It's recruiting senior citizens to keep the streets safe in a new program called the Senior Patrol.

“Most of them are retired and just want to do something for their community and be a part,” said Oakland Police Chief Chris Earl.

Earl says the program is simple and could prevent people from becoming the victims of a crime.

Any senior citizen interested can come in and sign up.

Once they pass a background check, they get a little training and ride around town in a patrol car making rounds.

“They work usually in the daytime and must work a minimum of 16 hours a month, but most of them are really go-getters and they work a lot more than that,” said Earl.

Anyone who's interested can apply and get on the patrol list.

The senior officers stop by and check on elderly people, or those with medical conditions, as well as any Oakland resident who is out-of-town and wants their house looked after.

Arnie Birmingham is developing this neighborhood which is mostly made up of senior citizens.

He thinks the program is a great idea.

“I think knowing that there is patrolling going on around town is probably the biggest deterrent to crime that I'm aware of. I just think it will make the citizens feel more safe,” said Birmingham.

This program is not entirely unique to the area.

Some other cities in the Mid-South have a senior patrol, but the town of Oakland said it was time for them to get on board to help fight crime.

If you would like to get on the patrol list, to either volunteer or be checked on, just call the Oakland Police Department at 901-465-0070.