North Plainfield Police to hit the streets

March 20, 2013 2:35:53 PM PDT
There's a new effort to make one New Jersey community feel safer.

Beginning Wednesday more police are walking the streets in North Plainfield.

But this long time tradition is not just about fighting crime.

Officer Albert Domizi seems to know everyone out along busy Somerset Street in the heart of North Plainfield.

Its spring, which means it is time for officers to spend more time out of the cruisers.

They are out walking the beat, for at least 15 minutes a day between 4 and 10 p.m.

"The more time you have in the downtown area, merchants feel better, shoppers feel better," said Chief William Parenti, of the North Plainfield Police Department.

Chief Parenti started this back in 2004.

It's an idea he got from his dad, a former Fanwood chief.

Each of the officers here will make the walking rounds at least once during their shift.

"So it's not the same officer every time different mix, maybe this officer knows this guy, the other one knows this guy," Parenti said.

Officer Domizi is fluent in Spanish as are a few officers in this growing Spanish speaking community which appreciates the closer bonds.

"Great for everybody, we feel safer," said Ralph Chavez, a business owner.

"It's a good approach, tying the community together," said John Habzitheodorou, a business owner.

"It's a real good, feel good program, the officers enjoy meeting the people, if you don't get out of the car, no contact, no human interaction," Domizi said.