Police curb vandalism in downtown Port Washington

PORT WASHINGTON -- Port Washington police say drunks on Franklin Street kept ruining the city's redesigned landscaping. Now, their solution to the problem is receiving statewide recognition, and won the city an award!

After redesigning downtown Port Washington along Franklin Street a few years ago, Port Washington police noticed they had a problem with some unruly drunks. "We started noticing a large increase in damage in that property there. Criminal damage to property, littering and disorderly behavior in our downtown business district at night,"

To fix the problem, police put their heads together. First, signs went up at local businesses who offered store fronts to put up surveillance cameras. Then, police increased foot patrols in the downtown area. With a new zero tolerance policy towards crime, police say they saw results. "Bar staff got to know us on a first name basis, and were very helpful identifying people who were potentially going to be problems later on in the evening,"

Nancy Brown is the owner of Brown's Floral, and she says the police department's hard work has made a big difference in the area. "It's a good program. I have to commend the police department," Brown said.

Earlier this month, the police department earned the Sir Robert Peel Award. It's given to the Wisconsin police department who has exceeded at problem solving. It's an award that was earned one step at a time, when a city came together. "That's what we saw through this program, is the public stepping up, and this truly is an award for the entire community,"

Port Washington police say they've put in tree guards to protect landscaping that was being torn down by vandals. They continue to have extra patrols on Franklin Street on foot and bike during bar hours.

For additional details, check out the Port Washington Patch article.