Police and Fire reports
By Annette Christie
Watervliet Township patrols remind residents to lock vehicles
The warning coming from police that needs repeating is that residents need to keep valuables out of their vehicles and keep them locked. Berrien County Sheriff Guy Puffer announced that at the Watervliet Township Board meeting this week as the numbers of vehicle breaking and entering continue to be more wide spread. This is the second time in two weeks that a warning of this type has gone out.
Puffer added that even if your car is in the garage keep it locked. He had a specific warning for those in possession of a concealed weapons permit, “Don’t leave your gun in your vehicle.”
Puffer said that especially in areas like Watervliet Township where there are a lot of seasonal residents, it is up to the year-round residents to keep their eyes open and be observant. “If you see something that doesn’t belong, let us know,” Puffer said. He recalled an incident from last year where some residents saw a vehicle that was not from their neighborhood and while they did not get a plate number they were able to tell officers some very specific details about the car. With those details officers were able to locate the car the next day and the suspect was arrested on a slew of charges, even more than just being connected to vehicle breaking and entering.
Puffer said that the more details about a suspicious vehicle or person that residents can provide, the easier it will be to locate and apprehend them. Over the period of nine days in early November, the Berrien County Sheriff investigated approximately 40 calls for larceny from a vehicle. In the vast majority of these incidents, which occurred during the night time hours, the vehicles were left unlocked by the owners and small personal items along with money was taken.
For the month of October Puffer and Goff performed the following calls for service in the Watervliet Township area: 17 misdemeanor arrests; 2 felony arrests; 41 traffic stops; 30 traffic citations written; 29 assists to other agencies; 97 resident/business checks; 43 original complaints; and four follow-ups.
Watervliet Fire Department
The Watervliet Fire Department responded to 37 calls in the month of October, with 27 of those being medical first responder calls. They responded to one structure fire, five alarms, one accident, and three calls for public service. The calls were broken out with 13 in the City of Watervliet and 24 in Watervliet Township.