Sooo, bit of a "crime wave" in Broad Ripple -- especially "downtown," where the presence of hip'n'happenin' bars, young people and the lousy judgement that often accompanies the combination of the two insures that there is always a little crime lapping about the ankles of Riparians.
The response? Why a Facebook page, a fund-raising initiative and a petition asking the mayor to "...install decorative street lights in an aesthetically pleasing way from Broad Ripple Avenue down to Kessler Blvd on the side streets of Carrollton, Guilford and Winthrop."
I'm not mocking -- all things being equal, if streetlights are going in, I'd as soon have lights that fit in with the quaint-to-twee character of residential Broad Ripple and I will happily contribute a few bucks to pay for 'em.
However, if you want to stop a wave, you might want to do a few things your ownself, like keeping doors and windows locked -- won't stop criminals, but it slows them down -- leaving your porch light(s) on (I dislike CFLs, but boy are they cheap to run 24/7!), and even hiring yourself a streetlight.
Yep, hiring one: for a low installation cost and small monthly fee that includes maintenance and power, Indianapolis Power & Light will very happily hang a somewhat unaesthetic streetlight on any pole they have space on* -- or put in a pole or make the light prettier for a little more up front. Dark alley behind your house? It doesn't have to be! (Most power companies offer a similar deal; local laws and customs may vary, please check.)
You could also arm yourself with a gun and some training; but not everyone is willing to do so. Me, I am, but I'd just as soon avoid having to use it. Lights and locks are a big help in stopping crime before it starts. It's not 100% but it has a known deterrent effect. (Also, to avoid crime away from home? Try not weaving back alone and tiddly to your car parked on a dark and isolated side street. Any adjectives you can drop from that sentence will help. Just sayin'.)
* Trivia: most of the smaller/shorter poles are owned by The Phone Company, who were polling your neighborhood back when the lights burned gas. The various pole owners and users keep track, tallying them up to figure out who owes rent to who (latecomers like cable TV always end up paying!). But that's not your worry.
T. R. MCELROY'S STREAMLINED TELEGRAPH KEYS
9 months ago