The Bad Guy Did What?

How e-mail has transformed the neighborhood watch

The women of Wisteria Lane may talk about the neighborhood's sexy plumber, but Charlotte's housewives are chatting via e-mail about the home invasion down the street.

These e-mail chains start in one community, usually from HOA presidents, and hopscotch across town in a matter of hours, alerting the city and suburban sets about crime in their neighborhoods. Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Rod Golding -- who is in charge of south Charlotte, where thieves regularly rip flat-screen TVs off the walls of manses in Montibello, Stonecroft, and other 'hoods -- says the e-mails give people a heads up on how the bad guys are doing their thing (as in ringing the doorbells to see if you're home and breaking in when you don't answer).

How effective are the e-mails? The messages are reaching more people than CMPD's e-mail crime alerts sent to subscribers, Golding says.

Now if only the sexy plumber was the guy who showed up when we called 9-1-1…

Categories: Buzz > Reality Check