(KSLA) - Uniting the community to drive out crime. That's the goal of National Night Out.
Today throughout the ArkLaTex, representatives of law enforcement agencies and first responders spent the evening getting to know the people they pledge to serve and protect.
More than 90 block parties were held in Shreveport alone. Police there say they rely on the community's help to keep everyone safe.
"You can't do it alone. That's the main thing," police Cpl. Marcus Hines said. "That's what we want to always encourage is the united front when you're working with the community.
"... Not just one category of crime, but all crime decreases when you have the involvement from the community."
More than 40 neighborhoods in Texarkana, Ark., and the Texas cities of Nash, Texarkana and Wake Village held an evening of fun, entertainment and socializing as part of National Night Out.
The communities' first party got underway at 4:30 p.m. at Smith Keys Apartment on the Arkansas side of Texarkana.
"We are hoping that National Night Out is a way for neighborhoods to get re-motivated into knowing each other and knowing what is going on with each other in their neighborhood and to get crime out of their city," Kristi Bennett, spokeswoman for the Texarkana, Ark., Police Department, said before the night's events got underway.
On Tuesday evening, Texarkana, Ark., police were at National Night Out events when a male was found fatally shot in the 2300 block of Washington Street. That was within a block or 2 of a couple National Night Out events.
On the Texas side of Texarkana, police there credit citizens with helping that department's relatively small investigative unit solve 2 homicides that occurred within 24 hours of each other in March.
"We solved those as a result of tips we got from the community," spokesman Shawn Vaughn said. "Some of those relationships where people felt confident to come to us and say 'Hey, this is what happened' may have resulted from some of the relationships as a result of National Night Out."
For a list of National Night Out events registered in Texarkana, Texas, click here.
Marshall, Texas, and the rest of Harrison County, Texas, celebrated National Night Out from 6 to 8 p.m. on the square at 100 W. Houston St. in downtown Marshall. Several businesses and organizations provided everything from free food and face painting to bounce houses and a dunking
booth. There were to be performances by 2 Marshall Independent School District choirs and the Texas Rage all-star cheer team. Demonstrations by Marshall police and firefighters also were scheduled.
Shreveport kicked off its celebration at 5:30 p.m. at A.C. Steere Park, 4009 Youree Drive. Then residents headed to their neighborhood gatherings from 6-9 p.m.
Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington kicked off the evening's National Night Out events in his parish at 6 p.m. at Kingston Plantation subdivision in the 100 block of Colonel Burt Boulevard in Benton.
"We always look forward to National Night Out because it gives us a chance to directly visit with the people we serve," says a statement from the sheriff issued beforehand. "Folks have shown tremendous support for our deputies over the past few months in light of national events, and we so appreciate how our residents have rallied behind the 'Thin Blue Line'."
There were 23 block parties throughout Bossier Parish in addition to the 10 scheduled with the Bossier City Police Department. The 23 are:
Fire District #5 Training Center , 600 block of Kilgore Rd., 6-9 p.m.
Plain Dealing, Oak Hill Baptist Church, 6-8 p.m.
Kingston Plantation 100 block of Colonel Burt Dr. 6 – 9 p.m.
River Ridge 100 block of Country Club Dr. 6 – 8:30 p.m.
Aileron Circle 2500 block of Aileron Cir., Benton 6 – 8 p.m.
Cross Creek Regent Circle (cul-de-sac) 6 – 8 p.m.
River Walk 60 block of River Walk (boat launch) 5 – 8 p.m.
Rosedale Place Trinity Drive (clubhouse) 6 – 9 p.m.
Willow Lake Adult Community 100 block of Willow Lake Blvd. 6 – 8:30 p.m.
Twin Point Drive 100 block of Twin Point Dr. 6 – 8 p.m.
Madonna Drive Madonna Drive (cul-de-sac) 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Woodlake North Boat launch parking lot 6 – 9 p.m.
Woodlake South 2 Morning Glory Cir. (cul-de-sac) 6 – 8 p.m.
Bellevue Road 4000 block of Bellevue Rd. 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Dogwood 3200 block of Heatherbrook 6 – 8 p.m.
Dogwood South 300 block of Blue Fox Cir. 6 – 9 p.m.
Dogwood Park Clubhouse 5:30 – 7 p.m.
Country Place Clubhouse 6 – 9 p.m.
Sterling Ranch Estates #5 Sterling Ranch Road North 6 – 8 p.m.
Creekside Children's Park 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Plantation Trace Mobile Home Park Behind of the Office 5 – 8 p.m.
The Lakes at Cottonwood 200 block of Stillwater 6 – 8 p.m.
Praise Temple of Bossier City 1760 E. Texas St., Bossier City 6 – 9 p.m.
Bossier City National Night Out block parties and events
• Hooter Park in Barksdale Annex – The annual Barksdale Annex Neighborhood Association's "March for Jesus" was scheduled to kick off this event. The march was to begin approximately 5:30 p.m. on Fullilove Dr. at Barksdale Blvd. and go east to Gibson Drive then left on Gibson to Hooter Park where a neighborhood gathering was to be held.
• Southgate Townhome Association – 5005 Longstreet Place (near swimming pool)
• 100 block of Plantation Trace
• 300 block of Oakland Place at the neighborhood park.
• 2300 block of Ashland Ave.
• Agape Faith Christian Fellowship Church – 2329 Broadway Drive
• 200 block of Welham Trace
• Cloverdale Plaza Apartments – 2213 Shed Road
• 1000 block of Shirley Lane
• 1200 block of Wisteria Lane