Light bulbs help Denver police reduce crime

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DENVER -- The Denver Police Department has an easy fix to reduce crime -- add more light. Something as simple as a light bulb can do the trick.

On Wednesday night, officers and neighbors canvassed the Swallow Hill neighborhood in the Capitol Hill area to brighten dark porches.

Police know crooks thrive in poorly lit areas. More than 300 high-energy florescent light bulbs were purchased by the department to be given away to homeowners and used as a crime deterrent.

“It helps encourage people that might be in the neighborhood for the wrong reasons to move along,” said Chris Chiari, vice president of the Swallow Hill Neighborhood Association.

Officers and neighbors covered several blocks, greeting unsuspecting residents with a smile.

The group knows the effort is what community policing is all about. Officers enjoyed the opportunity to meet people not in crisis.

District 6 Cmdr. Ron Saunier said it’s a way to foster goodwill and create positive experiences.

“The next time when you do see that officer, it’s someone you know,” Saunier said. “It makes it a lot easier if you’re talking to someone you’ve already met.”

The City and County of Denver has been replacing street lights with better LED technology. The new lights have significantly deterred crime, according to police.