Holiday Crime Prevention
When the holiday season arrives, don’t let the spirit of giving lull you into giving burglars, robbers and thieves a better chance to do their dirty work. Crooks love the holidays as much as everyone else, especially because it is an opportune time for crime.
Here are some tips from the Garland County Sheriff’s Office on how to celebrate safely this holiday season:
If You Are Home
- Consider how much of your residence you are exposing to people passing by on the street when you have your curtains open (displaying seasonal ornaments, etc.)
- Keep doors and windows locked.
If You Are Out for the Evening
- Be extra cautious about locking doors and window when you leave, even if it’s just for a few minutes.
- Don’t display gifts where they can be seen from outside.
- Turn on lights and a radio or TV so it looks like someone’s home.
If You Are Traveling
- Ask a neighbor to watch your home, and park in the driveway from time to time.
- Don’t forget to have mail and newspaper delivery stopped. If it piles up, it is a sure sign you are gone.
- Get an automatic timer for your lights.
If You Are Shopping
- (Note: Remember to get your credit card(s) back from the salesclerks at the end of your transaction).
- Avoid carrying large amounts of cash; pay with a check or credit card whenever possible.
- Deter purse-snatchers. Don’t overburden yourself with packages. Be extra careful with purses and wallets. Carry a purse close to your body, not dangling by straps. Do not leave your purse unattended in a shopping cart (even while you turn your back to look at an item on a shelf, etc.).
- Park in a well-lighted space, and be sure to close the windows and lock the car.
- Shopping with kids? Teach them to go to a store clerk or security guard if you get separated.
- Stay alert and be aware of what’s going on around you.
Protect Your Vehicle
Lock – Take – Hide
- Lock your vehicle
- Take your belongings out of the vehicle. Do not leave anything in plain view (ex. Purses, wallets, GPS systems, sunglasses, CD’s holiday gifts, spare change, etc).
- Hide your belongings inside your vehicle (in trunk, console, glove box, etc).
- Help prevent your vehicle from being stolen by always locking your car and using anti-theft devices. And never leave your vehicle running while you run inside your home or a store – even if for only a minute or two.