Q&A: Cottonwood Neighborhood Officer Matt Watson
The Cottonwood Police Department has created a Neighborhood Officer Program that divides the city into nine distinct “neighborhoods.” The objective of the Neighborhood Officer Program is to identify community issues, concerns, problems and crime trends which have long term quality of life issues.
The Neighborhood Officer will act as a liaison between the Police Department, the community, and a variety of city agencies as necessary to address problems and reduce criminal activity.
The Neighborhood Officer responsibilities:
• Take primary “ownership” and identify and address crime issues within their assigned neighborhood.
• Assist with public education, crime prevention, and neighborhood specific problems and help with coordination of other city services.
• Track neighborhood problems and crimes that affect the overall quality of life in a neighborhood and require repeated police response.
You can contact your Neighborhood Officer via email on the Cottonwood Police Department’s web page under “Find Your Neighborhood Officer.”
Cottonwood Officer Matt Watson is responsible Zone 8, from west side of 12th St west to Chuckawalla St. and south side of State Route 89A/Cottonwood St to Fir St.
What steps will you take to learn about the neighborhood to which you are assigned and what will you do to make sure the people in this neighborhood know you?
Officer Watson: Look at the calls for service in Zone 8. I try to introduce myself to the residents in my area when I see them walking or outside of the residence when I am able to stop and talk.
How much time will you be able to invest into interfacing with your assigned neighborhood on a weekly basis? What are your priorities with how you use your time in the neighborhood policing program?
Officer Watson: That is a difficult question to answer due to the fact it depends on what calls for service are taking place and the number of calls during my shift. I am happy to speak with any of the residents who have questions regarding Zone 8.
What do you want the people and businesses in the neighborhood to which you are assigned to know about you?
Officer Watson: I have been a police officer for over 14 years with the Cottonwood Police Department. I am always willing to speak with the residents in the city and my zone.
What are the most obvious needs you see about the neighborhood to which you are assigned? What is your plan to help this neighborhood meet those needs?
Officer Watson: In my opinion, Zone 8 does not have obvious needs. There is the normal concern about traffic that all Zones share. One issue is already being addressed with the City of Cottonwood looking to fix the dip on South Willard Street.