I have lived in the Deerfield Hills Community since 1979 and became involved in many community activities in the early 1990’s. Crime had overridden our community. Our neighborhood was unsafe and I felt I had to do something. Deerfield Hills was #1 on the list of the top ten worst crime areas in Colorado Springs at the time. We dealt with graffiti, gun shots at night, home invasions, auto theft, and loud music and parties. Gang members intimidated us and drug dealers kept us in our homes.
When I requested help, I was told I had to submit paperwork for someone to hear my case. Members of the community who took pictures documenting place and time of issues carried very little weight. Instigators were taken to court for their actions. People of the community were degraded, stalked and verbally intimidated.
The neighborhood put up fences to discourage passage through private property. Sidewalks and easements were shut down and reconstructed to redirect the flow of epople through the community with help from Colorado Springs Utilities. As a veteran, I was frustrated when I was told there is nothing I could do about the crime in my neighborhood. I was not satisfied with that answer. I knew there was something I could do and someone had to help us.
Dave Munger of CONO was that someone. With strategy and the help of Code Enforcement, we came up with a plan. Deerfield Hills created a Neighborhood Watch and our Colorado Springs City Council Member Margaret Radford believed in the neighborhood by setting the standards.
Today, we no longer have the reputation we once had. This success story would not have been possible without the Citizen Advisory Committee at Sand Creek Police Department, CONO and Code Enforcement.
Today, our community is thriving. Jody Derrington, the Facility Director at Deerfield Hills Community Center has mastered the programs that fit the needs of our growing community. The center represents a strong sense of commitment. Our neighborhood continues to work closely with CONO.
I am reminded, “It takes years to build something and only seconds to have it destroyed.” Let’s stay strong and united as a team, by pledging involvement with CONO.