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Surratts Garden President Adrienne Crowell with Officer Janifer speaking to community. (Photo by Linda Poulson)

Forty participants and members of the Prince George’s County police department participated on June 6 in the 8th Annual Crime Walk in the Surratts-Garden Community in Clinton. The community houses 303 homes and continues to have a good relationship with the police to deter crime.

“The reason for the Crime Walk is to help promote unity in the community and safety, and to point out consciousness and problem areas, such as reporting vacant homes,” said Adrienne Crowell, president of the Surratts-Garden Community organization.

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The Crime Walk began on the corner of Garden and Gwynndale Road and covered seven blocks, which turned at Pryde Drive. It then ended in a round-about at Small Drive.  “There is a gap between the police and community,” Janifer said. “We try to bridge that gap and reach people by walking through their neighborhoods. That was more of a challenge in the ’80s and ’90s,” he added. “We have learned from our mistakes and need to educate adults and children. The social media community has been very forthcoming.”

Janifer spoke about programs to bridge the gap such as the Citizens Academy where adults can pair with police to experience what they go through on the streets, and the Explorers club that targets ages 13 to 21.

Deandre Wright, 11, who goes to Clinton Grove Elementary School, was part of the Crime Walk.

“I’m involved because a lot of things are going on such as riots and young people getting killed,” he said. “My mom is a policeman and we should not try to be disrespectful.”

Crowell presented a 10-year award to Emmett L. Driggers, a retired patrol officer and community activist. Driggers spent two years in the Montgomery County Corrections Department and 26 years with the Prince Georges County Police.

Recognition was also given to the 14 residents of Gwynndale Road, the most of all the surrounding neighborhoods.