Police - Crime Prevention
Install good locks on doors and windows.
- Deadbolt locks with 1" throw.
- At least 3" screws in strike plate.
- Pins or some type of lock on windows.
Keep doors and windows locked, even when home.
- In a majority of break-ins there was no forced entry, doors or windows were opened or unlocked.
- Keep garage door closed and locked.
- Use Solid Core or metal doors
- Pad lock gates.
- Use Exterior lights at night.
- Have house number at the front and rear of the house, so emergency services can find your house quickly.
- Do not hide a key outside.
- Never open your door automatically.
- Install and use a peephole.
- Ask for photo identification from service or delivery people.
- Be very cautious of service or delivery people which were not called to the house.
If there is any doubt as to legitimacy, or if the person is insisting on performing the service, do not open the door, call the company or call the police.
- Close all blinds and drapes at night.
- Notify neighbors and the police when you go out of town.
- Make arrangements for the paper and mail to be picked up while gone, or stop delivery.
- Leave lights on when you are not home, or use a timer.
- Do not leave notes on the door when you go out announcing you are away.
- Keep an inventory with brand name, model, and serial numbers of all house hold belongings.
- Do not keep large amounts of cash in the house.
Fraud & Con Games
- Do not fall for anything that sounds too good to be true, chances are it is.
- Never give out any personal information over the phone (Credit card number, Social Security number, Bank Account number, Driver License number, Date of Birth, etc.).
- Do not let anyone rush you into making a decision over the phone, tell the caller you need some time to think over the proposal; if it is legitimate, they will give you time. You will then have time to check out the person/business with the better business office, the district attorney, the attorney general, state comptroller, and/or local police.
- Do not sign anything until you read and understand it. If you do not understand the item(s) to be signed, have someone you trust read it for you.
- Never withdraw money from your bank or ATM at the request of a stranger, and never offer to take a stranger to the bank. If anyone represents themselves to you as an employee of your bank, call your bank to verify it.
- Never trust anyone that you do not know. Con artists can be very smart, aggressive and extremely persuasive, and can come across as the "Mr. Nice Guy" or "Miss Nice Lady"; always ask for identification and references.
- Beware of anyone that seeks you out to perform any type of service for that you did not request; never pay anyone in advance for any type of service, whether you requested the work or not.
- Do not accept someone as official or legitimate solely based on the way they look or by something they show you; always check them out.
- Beware of calling 900 numbers. Calls could cost you extraordinarily large amounts of money, even for a relatively short call.
- Be very cautious with a person trying to sell you something over the phone. The best policy is to either hang up or tell them that you are not interested. Be very cautious if they say it is a local company and your caller ID does not show the caller's information.
- Do not be ashamed to report any incident to the police when you have been victimized, it could save other innocent persons from also being victimized.
Crime Prevention for Thefts from Vehicle
Thefts from Vehicles are very difficult cases to solve as there is usually very little physical evidence left behind after one has occurred. The crimes usually occur in the early morning hours in apartment or business parking lots when it is less likely the thieves will be seen. In order to help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of a Thefts from Vehicle we have provided some easy tips to follow.
- Never leave the keys in your vehicle.
- Always lock the doors and close your windows, even when you are away from the vehicle for a short time.
- Remove items (purses, cell phones, tablets, cash, tools etc.) from the vehicle when possible. If you can't take them out, put them in a place that is out of view (in the trunk or tool box)
- Remove "pull-out" style stereos and/or removable faceplates of stereos. (if equipped)
- Park in well-lit areas close to the building. While parking in an isolated spot may reduce the risk of door dings, a criminal looks for cars parked out of the way in order to help ensure less attention is drawn to them.
- Park near your apartment so that the vehicle can be viewed periodically.
- Report suspicious persons seen wandering around in parking lots or looking into cars as they walk by. Don’t hesitate to call 911 to report suspicious persons, you can even call and remain anonymous.
- Keep a list of serial numbers for your commonly used electronic equipment. Even if you plan on never leaving a cellular phone, tablet or laptop computer in your car, you should record all of the following information:
- Make of Item: (Motorola, Sony, Compaq, etc.)
- Model Number
- Serial Number
Other vehicle security considerations:
Parking Lot Safety
- Use a steering wheel lock bar or steering column locking cover.
- Install an "Engine kill" switch.
- Install a car alarm
Parking Your Vehicle
- Be alert of your surroundings. Look for vehicles that may have followed you into the parking lot. Make several turns in a parking lot to verify this. If you believe you are being followed, do not get out of your vehicle. Doors should be locked. Stay in a well-traveled and well-lit area. Call 9-1-1 from your cell phone or go to a convenience store, service station, Police Station etc.
- Look for strangers or suspicious persons sitting in vehicles, standing or walking in the parking lot that appear to be watching you.
- Park as close to your destination as possible.
- Do not park near shrubbery, large vehicles, dumpsters, or anything that blocks your view or provides a place for someone to hide.
- Remember where you parked so you do not spend a lot of time walking around the parking lot when you are ready to leave. If the parking lot has area identifiers, take note of that area where you parked.
- If it is night, park in a well-lit and well-traveled area. Do not park in an isolated area.
- Look around your vehicle before you get out. Pay attention to the surroundings and any suspicious activity.
- Do not leave any personal items that can be seen in your vehicle that have your name, address or identifying information on them.
- Put all valuable items such as packages, purses, and electronic equipment in the trunk. If there is no trunk hide your valuables under the seat or cover them with a blanket or coat.
- Before leaving your vehicle, make sure ALL the doors are locked and that ALL the windows are rolled all the way up and vent windows are locked.
- If possible, wait for other people to walk to your destination with you before you exit your vehicle.
- Use a parking shuttle service to and from the parking lot if it is available.
Walking To Your Vehicle
- If you are working after dark, try to move your vehicle closer to the building before it gets dark.
- If you frequently work at night, consider a security system for your vehicle. Install one with a panic button which will sound either the horn or a siren. Also, consider carrying a whistle, mace or pepper spray.
- If you have to work late, notify someone and give them a phone number where you can be reached. Let them know how late you will be working.
- Do not overload yourself with packages, bags, office work, etc. If necessary, move your vehicle closer and make several trips, or move your vehicle to a loading area and load items there.
- Walk to your vehicle in a group with other employees or customers.
- If you find you have to walk to your vehicle alone, try to get a co-worker that is still working to walk with you. If there is security available, call security and ask for an escort.
- Again, be aware of your surroundings and be alert of suspicious activity as you walk. If you see anything suspicious, go back inside and call the police.
- Do not walk with your head down. Look around you and be observant. Assert body language that says that you are in control and will cause an uproar if bothered.
- Have your vehicle keys out and hold them firmly in your hand as you exit the building(s), so you will not have to look for them when you reach your vehicle. Make sure your house keys are separate from your vehicle keys.
- If you are approached by a suspicious person in the parking lot, go back inside quickly and call the police.
- If you are approached and grabbed, throw your keys as far as possible and begin screaming.
- Never get into a vehicle with a stranger, even if he has a weapon. Most attackers do not want to hurt you, they just want you to comply. Run the opposite way the car is facing and scream, the attacker will usually leave the area.
- Do not carry your purse by your side. Carry it close to your body, preferably in front. If someone grabs your purse, let go of it, rather than try to hold on to it.
- If you are approached by a suspicious vehicle, walk or run the opposite direction the vehicle is headed and go back inside. Do not run around the parking lot.
- If you are approached, get a description of the person(s). Note their appearance, clothing, vehicle, and registration. Look them in the face. This acts to deter any activity, and it aids in identification.
- If you think you are being followed, walk to a lighted area, into a store, or a crowded place. Then call the police or have someone call for you.
- Walk only in main areas. Do not take short cuts, and do not walk near shrubbery, dumpsters, or other areas where someone could hide.
- Immediately report any maintenance problems such as burned out lights, defective door locks, etc.
- As you approach your vehicle, look under it and around it.
- Keep your vehicle in good working order. Check tires, oil, and have plenty of gasoline. Make sure the light inside the vehicle works when the door is opened.
- Check inside your vehicle when you open the door before you get inside.
- Lock all the doors as soon as you get inside the vehicle. Turn on the headlights when starting your vehicle at night.
- If you are approached by a suspicious person once you are inside your vehicle, do not roll down your window and do not unlock or open a door. Honk the horn and drive away if possible.
- If someone tries to tell you that there is something wrong with your vehicle do not stop to talk to them. Drive to a safe area, such as a convenience store or service station to check on the vehicle.
- If you think you are being followed when you leave the parking lot, stay in a lighted and well-traveled area do not drive in an isolated area. Go to a convenience store, service station, Police Station or business and call the police.
Visit www.ncpc.org for more information.