Block Watch gains ground in Port Moody after shootings

Port Moody Police are seeing a resurgence in interest in the Block Watch program in the wake of three gangland shootings in the city. - FILE GRAPHIC/THE TRI-CITY NEWS
Port Moody Police are seeing a resurgence in interest in the Block Watch program in the wake of three gangland shootings in the city.

Port Moody Police are looking for a few good neighbours to take on the Block Watch captain mantle.

Since a rash of three suspected gangland shootings in the city, the PMPD has been getting a number of calls from residents wanting to start a Block Watch program in their neighbourhood, said Const. Luke van Winkel.

"Community involvement and interaction, whether it's in a highrise tower or a cul-de-sac... needs to be the way we solve crime," he said.

The program had been fairly dormant, van Winkel said, until the sudden spike in homicides (before the shootings, Port Moody hadn't logged a murder since 2002).

On Saturday morning, a 32-year-old Glenayre resident, Joseph Markel, was gunned down at his home. In June Randy Naicker, 34, was shot in broad daylight in the Queens Street plaza parking lot; just a week earlier 35-year-old Bin Toor was shot in the recreation centre parking lot. All three are believed to be targeted gang shootings.

Block Watch captains are responsible for connecting with neighbours in a certain area (the size depends on the neighbourhood) and communicating information and updates from police, mainly through an email distribution list but also by phone for seniors or those without internet access. Captains must also go through a criminal record check to ensure neighbours feel safe sharing information and interacting with them.

Van Winkel said captains are expected to be vigilant in looking out for their neighbours and to know what's going on in their area.

Neighbourhoods who join Block Watch receive information on crime trends happening in their area and throughout the city. Homeowners in a Block Watch area may also qualify for discounts on their home insurance.

• For more information, email


We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Port Mann Bridge use declined for most of 2014
A year after a fire, PoCo firefighters hold special celebration for boy
New environmental standards sought for development in Port Moody
UPDATED: Fire crews battle blaze at Coquitlam strip mall
Former soldiers blast their treatment by Veterans Affairs
No plans to close schools in Mission
MY House moves forward
Slopes for Hope at Hemlock Valley Resort
District of Kent hears water woes

Community Events, January 2015

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Jan 23 edition online now. Browse the archives.