We are all aware of the crime problem in Robeson County. We rank embarrassingly high in the state when it comes to violent crime and property crime, and at times our law enforcement agencies, under resourced as they are, appear as if they have gone to a gun fight with a butter knife.
A mixture of things — poverty, drugs, alcohol, broken homes, an undereducated populace — have conspired against us, making this county less attractive to professionals and industries looking for a place to set up shop. Too often our crime rate trumps all that is attractive about this county — friendly people, a temperate climate, great location, good roads, a regional airport, plenty of water and cheap land, a state park on the Lumber River, recreational opportunities, Southeastern Regional Medical Center, The University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Robeson Community College, and much more.
With all that as inspiration, this newspaper has joined the crime fight, but once again, we are only the messenger. It is you, the public, who must enlist if this effort is going to take a bite out of crime.
On Tuesday, The Robesonian will debut “Robeson County’s Most Wanted,”a feature that we plan to continue each Tuesday on Page 2A until all of the bad guys are rounded up.
We will work with local law enforcement agencies that will provide information on criminals on the loose that we will publish. We will begin with the Sheriff’s Office and the Lumberton Police Department, but all law enforcement agencies in this county will be extended an invitation to participate. The feature will include, but not always be limited to, the suspect’s photograph, date of birth, last known address, and information on physical characteristics such as hair and eye color, height, weight and distinguishing marks such as tattoos.
All that information will also be dumped onto our website at robesonian.com.
You know the next part of the plan. When a reader or a visitor to robesonian.com sees a familiar if not a friendly face, there will be phone numbers provided to call to deliver to interested law enforcement officers information that could lead to an arrest.
The concept is well worn, but has a demonstrated record of effectiveness. those whose photographs will be included in Robeson County’s Most Wanted. wins — except