23 NEWS has been bringing you Operation Safer Streets stories for near a year now, but today was the first time Operation Safer Streets actually teamed up with Rockford Police to try to make a neighborhood safer.
It's a new program called Cops on the Block and it's an old school way of bringing police into a neighborhood to talk to residents. Today it took place on S. Court and Montague Streets.
There were activities and freebies for kids, but real progress was made when neighbors helped police arrested a wanted man in the area and got the city's Public Works Department to come clean up overgrown bushes and trees.
The area has been a hotspot for crime recently. Burglaries, drive by shootings and graffiti are just some of the issues that have neighbors reeling. Many residents say they were thrilled to see police.
This is the first of six "Cops on the Block" events to take place this summer. They will all happen on Wednesdays between 12pm and 2pm. We'll announce the neighborhood the night before on the 23 News at 10. Stay tuned!