LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — When Metro police say they believe in community policing, you don’t need to look very far for proof.

The “First Tuesday” events that have returned across the valley are all the evidence you need. The enormous time commitment — patrol officers, detectives, sergeants, lieutenants … all the way up to captains — is on display in a united effort to accomplish a simple goal.

Metro police want the public to see them as partners in change.

At an apartment complex near Lake Mead Boulevard and Jones Boulevard yesterday afternoon, the message was repeated again and again. Police need the public as much as the public needs them. The Crossing apartments are in the territory policed by the Bolden Area Command, led by Capt. Tim Hatchett. And he was working the crowd — about 30 adults, with kids streaming through when they weren’t outside in the bouncy house or gobbling the treats that police brought.

It’s a scene that played out all across the valley, with 10 events that covered different topics, the current hot buttons that are getting attention when officers aren’t combatting the No. 1 priority: violent crime.

Capt. Tim Hatchett, leader of Metro’s Bolden Area Command, talks to residents at The Crossings Apartments at a “First Tuesday” event on April 5, 2022. (Greg Haas / 8NewsNow)

For Bolden, Tuesday night was about preventing burglaries.

Bolden’s leaders went through some familiar steps that people somehow skip over when they get in a hurry: lock your doors, be aware of your surroundings and “see something, say something.” With auto burglaries in the news recently, the conversation focused on keeping windows up, doors locked and valuables hidden, if they have to be left in the car at all.

The audience was polite, waiting for opportunities to bring up things that were on their minds: gas thefts, catalytic converter thefts and fireworks that shattered the peace in the complex just the night before.

Metro Lt. Cody Fulwiler told residents that police are making progress against crime in the area.

“Our project is your apartment complex,” Fulwiler told residents. He said calls for service at the complex have dropped significantly — from 127 down to 92 — since Metro started working there.

“Is that because of what we’re doing? Maybe, but it’s because you all are helping us,” Fulwiler said.

The conversation turned back to violent crime.

Bolden Area Command in Las Vegas at 1851 Stella Lake St., near the intersection of Lake Mead Boulevard and Martin Luther King Boulevard. (Greg Haas / 8NewsNow)

Capt. Hatchett brought home the message again. If people can do their part in helping police crack property crimes, officers can spend more time on the serious crimes that end in shootings, beatings and abuse. A little more help — and an understanding of the priorities that are in play — could make a big difference in the lives of many.

Other speakers asked the residents to use 311, or even get a phone number from an officer who was at the event. Keep communicating with police on the little stuff, but understand when something else is a higher priority.