On August 1, local residents joined millions of people across the country in celebrating National Night Out, an annual campaign that promotes police–community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie. The Toluca Lake event, held at the Chase Bank parking lot on Riverside Drive, featured live music, raffle prizes, and free hot dogs, coffee and other refreshments thanks to sponsors Craig Strong, the Toluca Lake Chamber of Commerce, the Toluca Lake Homeowners Association, Target, Patys and Hampar Properties. Undaunted by the hot weather and distant rumbles of thunder, City Councilmember David Ryu, officers from LAPD’s North Hollywood Station, and representatives from the Toluca Lake Neighborhood Watch were among the many who stopped by to mingle and enjoy the festivities.
“I think National Night Out is an example of the strength and voice of the community,” says LAPD Senior Lead Officer Robert Benavidez. “The emphasis really is a community’s willingness and desire to create an ongoing partnership with law enforcement that yields results in lower crime and safer neighborhoods. Communities that embrace this philosophy, along with implementing a unified crime prevention strategy plan, have had a measurable impact on reducing crime.”