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Coffee with A Cop program heads north

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What're the most pressing issues when it comes to public safety? That will vary depending on who you ask and where they live. The Coffee with a Cop program headed north today in what's become a popular initiative to make the Guam Police Department more accessible to the public.

He's fallen victim to burglary many times. But when Yigo resident Tony Arriola called 911 for help, he says he was left waiting for hours for police to respond. "Sometimes half day, sometimes the next day," he shared. Arriola and his wife had the chance to voice these concerns to the Guam Police Department today at the Yigo McDonald's.

It's called the Coffee with a Cop initiative: coffee free of charge; conversation with members of the force who for months have made rounds at each of the fast food chain's locations to get input from residents.

"At least I can present my problem with them. And I hope they can really change," Arriola said, hopefully.

 Arriola's concerns could be addressed soon thanks to newly introduced legislation that gives GPD property in Yigo which they may use to build a police precinct.

Chief of Police JI Cruz acknowledges they need to accommodate the village's growing population.

Currently, Yigo is being serviced by the Dededo Precinct Command.

 "With that idea in mind, we're looking at an even quicker response time for calls for service up here in the Yigo area," said the chief.

Aside from slow response times, Chief Cruz says he heard concerns about curfew.

Cruz reminds residents that curfew law states minors cannot be out from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. from Sunday through Thursday without an adult.

On Fridays and Saturdays, curfew law allows minors to be out until midnight.

This, he says, is a seasonal issue because students are out for summer break. "Should any of our residents see that, definitely contact the Guam Police Department, report it to us, most especially if they're involved with some type of criminal activity. Whether it be graffiti, which is a lot of times what we see, underage drinking, drinking under the age of 21, please report it to the Guam Police Department because those have a tendency to lead to other crimes which are usually more serious than those statutory crimes," he said.

Another concern for northern residents is drug usage.

Chief Cruz credits the public for reporting crimes and giving tips that have led to drug raids and arrest, saying, gratefully, "We're getting a lot of good tips, we're getting a lot of good information about what's happening in the community."

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