OAK RIDGE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Oak Ridge was one of several communities to hold National Night Out Tuesday to celebrate the relationship between law enforcement and the community.
The event was from 4 to 8 p.m. at Bissell Park behind the municipal center. A hundred or more showed up to enjoy a free concert, bounce houses, a food truck, and more than a dozen vendors offering giveaways and information on personal safety.
The event was also held to celebrate citizen patrol efforts.
"It's really a chance for the community o come together and be aware of what they can do to enhance public safety in the neighborhoods, in their blocks, and in the city in general," said Police Chief James Agaki.
One of the largest and most involved programs is the city's neighborhood watch group. Nearly 200 streets participate, and police credit the group with a decrease in crime.
"The police can't be the eyes and the ears everywhere and so it helps if they report what they see and suspicious activity to the police department," said Emilee Smith, the group's vice president.
"We've had a number of drug busts in some of our problem areas of the community. We've solved some significant burglary issues. Crime went down ten percent this past year and that comes from a partnership with the community," said Oak Ridge City Manager Mark Watson.