Odessa Residents Celebrate "Texas Night Out"

Roma Vivas
News West 9

ODESSA- Many Odessan's will be turning on the porch light and getting together in the streets. It's part of "Texas Night Out," they're hoping to send a message to criminals that they are ready to fight back.

"The main objective of Texas Night Out is to have the citizens in the State of Texas, the city of Odessa step out into their yards and meet their neighbors and say 'you know what we are tired of the crime and we are tired of the drugs, we are going to do something about it,'" Corporal Jamie Brown with the Odessa Police Department, said.

This year there were half the numbers of block parties booked for Tuesday night compared to last year.  Just last week NewsWest 9 told you about burglaries going up in Odessa, Corporal Jamie Brown says it's more important than ever to get neighbors together.

"Because if you let the crook know that we are going to be watching your back and we are going to be watching for you, we are watching our neighbors back, and we are watching our house, we don't want you around, they are not going to hit those houses," Brown said.

That's the reason why Joyce Watkins looks forward to her block party every year.

"It's a wonderful neighborhood, I've been here for 46 years and we've all been here a while and it's well kept, we watch each others houses," Odessa Neighbor Joyce Watkins, said.

Watkins also says she trusts some of her neighbors so much that several of them even have a copy of her house key and block parties are a way to promote safety and to let your neighbors know you are watching out for their well being.

"I think if you know your neighbors, you would want to help watch and see that everything is ok with them," Watkins said.

The City of Midland already celebrated their night out on August. The University of West Texas of the Permian Basin hosted their first block party on Tuesday night, they offered refreshments and entertainment.