Operation Crime Watch
Operation Crime Watch (OCW) is Baltimore city’s neighborhood watch strategy. “Neighborhood Watch” generally refers to strategies that involve residents in preventing crime in their block, neighborhood, or community. Experience has shown that the neighborhood watch strategy is most useful in preventing crimes of opportunity such as burglaries, robberies, car theft, and vandalism. You can find more information on the neighborhood watch strategy and how effective it is here.
Operation Crime Watch was created in 2000. Baltimore City has been able to improve the program based on the experience of neighbors’ all over the city. Today, Operation Crime Watch focuses on bringing neighbors together to build a shared expectation that they will report crime and will intervene in negative activity.
Baltimore’s Operation Crime Watch can provide support for the following activities:
- Supporting police-community partnerships for crime prevention
- Neighborhood block organizing around public safety concerns
- Increasing visibility of neighborhood public safety groups through signage and neighborhood safety walks
Crime Watch Numbers
In addition, the Mayor's Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement works with the Baltimore Police Department to assign individual Crime Watch numbers. A confidential, unique, seven-digit number assigned by the police department. You can use it to report crime and suspicious activity without telling your identity to the police officer who answers the call. You can apply for a Crime Watch Number here.
See our Reporting Crime & Grime section for more tips on reporting crime.