Neighborhood Watch in North Tonawanda

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By: Brendan McDonough

Reporter for North Tonawanda

Residents across North Tonawanda are keeping an extra eye out for crime. Across the City residents are coming together. They are looking and listening for anything that might be out of the ordinary. It’s all part of a neighborhood watch group, aimed to help take a bite out of crime.

“The key thing I have learned since being a member of the watch is that the best way to prevent crime is to eliminate the opportunity for it,” said Joe Marranca, Neighborhood Watch Member.

From Webster to Oliver Street they are coming together. Residents, working hand in hand, to help try and make the area a little safer. They hold regular meetings. It is usually on Thursday nights. Along with them is usually a member from law enforcement. Together they work on looking at the problem areas in the City and look at ways to make North Tonawanda a better place for everyone.

“Our motto is “See something-say something”, so even if you might think it’s nothing, we would still say to make the phone call and make a police report. Every little bit helps, so that law enforcement will have that information at their disposal,” said Marranca.

From the young to the old, people of all ages are welcome to join the watch group. Nina Marranca is Joe’s daughter. She is also a member of the watch group. For her safety is a top priority, that’s because she is blind does not have that sense of sight. Nina is a sophomore in College in Buffalo and uses the assistance of a seeing eye dog. For her safety is important, both as a student and as a local resident.

“Because I am at school a lot, I kind of look at things within the community at school and how we can keep ourselves safe. Then I come back here to North Tonawanda I listen to everyone else and I compare the 2 and sometimes it is really interesting,” said Marranca.

Learning about how other communities keep safe and then bringing that information back home, is something that residents say benefits everyone. Helping to keep the city safe and forming friendships along the way.

“I have met so many politicians, police officers and residents that I would not have otherwise known. A lot of citizens come to our meetings just to socialize and have that sense of community,” said Sherri Marranca, Neighborhood Watch Member.

The group also works as an advocate for residents. If you have concerns about stairs or if street lights or out, residents can contact the group to get those issues addressed. Another issue they deal with is residents who have issues with another neighbor. Working with neighbors and officials to make sure people not only get along but feel safe in North Tonawanda.

One June 11th the group will be doing a “Slow Stroll” in one of the neighborhoods. It will be about an hour walk, taking small steps to try and make a big impact on crime.


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