What can and can't the HOA do about criminal activity?
The HOA is primarily responsible for enforcing the community's governing documents (CC&Rs, Bylaws, and Rules & Regulations). Sometimes there is overlap between violations of community rules and violations of local laws (like observing quiet hours, parking in a red zone, etc.), but most of the time community violations do not constitute criminal activity. Whenever there is suspected criminal activity, the local authorities have more resources and tools to resolve the issues. Please report ALL criminal activity to local police, sheriff, or other applicable law enforcement division. If this is an emergency, dial 911. Often, there are non-emergency phone numbers, or even email addresses, where less urgent criminal activity can be reported.
What CAN the HOA do about criminal activity? The HOA can send a violation notice to the owner of the unit to notify them about the activity. Also, if enough residents are interested, the community can form a neighborhood/block watch committee to patrol the neighborhood and report suspicious activity to local law enforcement. Local law enforcement websites have helpful information about forming a committee like this.
What CAN'T the HOA do about criminal activity? The HOA cannot investigate criminal activity, cannot file police reports, and cannot enforce laws. For these reasons, you should notify local police, sheriff, or other applicable law enforcement division of any suspected criminal activity.