This meeting was attended by a rather large crowd, including Captain Saucier, Sergeant Campbell, Officer Salmon of the Worcester Police Department, Dan Cahill of the Code Department, William Breault of the Main South Alliance of Public Safety, Jini Henderson, Casey Starr, Councilor Rivera, Councilor Palmieri, Councilor Bergman, Jayde Campbell of SMOC, George Valeri, and half a dozen more, including myself.
The main focus of the meeting was the continuing problem of graffiti that has increased in frequency throughout the Beacon Street, Main Street area.
The letters that the City of Worcester sends to property owners that have had their buildings “tagged” with graffiti was one topic of discussion. It was alleged by some that they seem threatening in tone, and the onus of the costs associated with graffiti removal are all on the property owners. Even when they catch a graffiti artist in the act, the punishment that derives from it does little to abate the costs of graffiti removal for the property owner. It was suggested that more restitution should be ordered in those cases that come before a judge to try and recoup some of the losses from the guilty parties.
Billy Breault brought in some pictures of Castle Park from 20 years ago to show how it looked back then before the work was done to restore the park. He emphasized that we don’t want to allow it to get like that again with lack of effort at enforcement.
The 7-day time period the City allows property owners to rectify cases of graffiti was discussed, and it was noted that when property owners comply with the time limit, often the properties are re-vandalized within days of taking care of the problem.
Prostitution was mentioned with one particular hooker being mentioned as particularly troublesome.
I brought up the continuing problem of illegal drug activity centered around Compare Foods and was informed of an arrest that was made there in the doorway of the supermarket as a direct result of information passed along to the police at these meetings.
This type of activity works if people will only take the time to take notes of illegal activity, gathering as much information as they can about what is going on, and who is responsible. The police will act on that information and help combat the problems that plague our neighborhoods.
Become involved. Stand up for what is right in our city. Do not let the scum rule our streets. The safety and security of our neighborhoods rest in good measure on the ability of the police to have solid sources of information flowing down to them so that they can allocate their resources more effectively to combat crime.
Attend the meetings, let your voice be heard.