Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping have become a sport for some of us, but, if we’re not careful, our purchases can make us targets of thieves.
The packaging from our trophies needs to be handled properly. Leaving trash at the curb, such as the empty boxes from a new giant-screen TV, gaming console or toys, might as well be a “new inventory” sign for burglars.
It’s an unfortunate fact that burglaries and thefts occur but it’s not difficult, or expensive, to reduce your chances of being a victim. Take time to break-down boxes and either dispose of them in black garbage bags or take them to a recycling center Dumpster or the landfill. Leaving them outside your house with the logos, images and text visible tells the criminals you likely have the items inside.
Other simple acts, like locking doors and windows, will make your home a slightly harder target, and slightly harder might be enough to move the criminal to the next house. When enough of us become harder targets, we can make the criminals move to another neighborhood or community.
If you’re the victim of theft or burglary, report it, immediately, to a law enforcement agency. Also report suspicious activity, like strangers wandering the neighborhood, people other than your neighbor removing things from your neighbor’s house, or unrecognized vehicles parked in or continually driving through the area.
If you’re not the victim but have information regarding an unsolved crime, you may contact Crime Stoppers by visiting 639TIPS.com or by calling 639-TIPS. Tips and calls directly to Crime Stoppers are anonymous and an anonymous tip that leads to an arrest might be eligible for a reward. The entire Crime Stoppers process, from tip to reward, is anonymous.