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Dog Walker Watch program serves as crime-fighting tool

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LONGMONT, Colo.  -- Do you walk your dog during the day or into the evening? The Longmont Police Department is counting on you. It has adopted the national program Dog Walker Watch, designed to provide an extra set of eyes and ears for law enforcement.

Deb Ault and her yellow lab Ariel have been walking their neighborhood for seven years.

"I'm out here twice a day. We go around the whole trail," she said.

And now, they are one of about 60 duos in Longmont keeping two sets of eyes on their community.

"That is what is so great about this program is that we're all out here anyway," she said.

The Dog Walker Watch program is crime awareness program developed by the National Association of Town watch and encourages dog walkers to aid in crime prevention.

"We just do our regular walk and if we see anything we know what to do and who to call," Ault said.

And for Longmont police, it's an important crime-fighting tool.

"We're using this program as a community crime awareness, and to teach people what to look for and how to call police and help their community," Longmont police Sgt. Jesse Buchholtz said.

Police hosted the first of two training programs for residents on Thursday night. They have already had numerous Dog Walker Watch members call on suspicious activity.

"Today's day shift, just a 10-hour period, we had over 130 calls for service," Buchholtz said. "Many of those were generated by those in the community. This is what we're hoping to continue and get that support."

Police ask the Dog Walker Watch members, or any member of the community, to be a good witness.

"The better the information, the better we are going to respond," Buchholtz said.

And for the crooks in Longmont, steer clear of Deb and Ariel.

"We want each of us to be safe and everybody in the neighborhood," Ault said.

A second training session for Dog Walker Watch will be held Aug. 31.

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