MOHAVE COUNTY - On June 7, Mohave County Sheriff Tom Sheahan said his office was working in crisis mode, with an average of one deputy per 824 county residents. He also said, "It's dangerous for the deputies and the residents out there."
The MCSO had 55 officers in the field at last count, and continues to lose officers to other departments. To boost local law enforcement's crime-fighting power, a group of citizens has stepped up to help stop the crime, the rampant theft, illegal dumping, drugs and gang activity.
Citizens Action Team, a citizens' grass-roots organization formed in January, "uniting in defense of our community," to fight the growing crime problem in Mohave County, according to a CAT press release.
It quoted county Manager Ron Walker as saying, "Our growing population, the meth epidemic and other factors have lead to an explosion of criminal activity in Mohave County."
"We get results," the release stated.
The group is not affiliated with any law enforcement agency, but its goals are to work with law enforcement to improve the general safety, security and prosperity of our communities, with the empowerment of victims and potential victims of crime.
Since January, CAT is credited with aiding in five arrests for various crimes, has been involved with the recovery of stolen vehicles and individual's stolen items, has caught and convicted illegal dumpers and has been involved in numerous surveillance and tracking operations that have been very fruitful. As a result, the crime rate has slowed in a number of areas.
"We now know who the thieves are, how they fence their stolen goods and how many are out there stealing every night. And they know that we know and are very afraid of what we can do, especially if we have many more members," the release stated. "By the way, (participation in) our group is excellent training for anyone wanting to get into law enforcement."
For more information and to "see how we get things done," go to the CAT Web site www.citizensactionteam.com; call 727-TEAM (8326); or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
CAT hosts regular meetings with guest speakers. The mailing address is Citizens Action Team, 2170 Northern Ave., Suite B28, Kingman, AZ 86409.
The group's slogan is "Evil happens when good people do nothing."