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Home > City Departments > Special Programs and Agencies > Save Our Streets > Crime Prevention

Crime Prevention

HOW TO RECOGNIZE SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY

ACTIVITY

COULD BE...

  • Unusual noises and other activity

Gunshots, screaming, sounds of combat or excessive barking of dogs or someone being forced into a car or house are reasons to call law enforcement immediately.

  • Slow moving vehicles

Certain cars that seem to be circling the block repetitively or following an aimless course, particularly without lights in the evening, could be driven by a person casing houses for burglary or by someone waiting for a drug pickup.  Possible sex offenders could also exhibit this behavior.  Place close attention if the car is seen close to schools, parks or playgrounds.

  • Parked vehicles that are occupied

Lookouts for burglaries or robberies in progress may be sitting in the parked car, sometimes pretending to be a young couple in love.  An occupied car waiting in front of a house where no one is home or a business that is clearly closed could be the get-away car for a burglary in progress.

  • Abandoned vehicle

This may be a stolen car.

  • Stranger walking along the side yard of a house or going into the back yard

Unless it's an acquaintance, relative or legitimate employee doing a check of utilities or repairs to the house it is very likely that this person is a burglar or trespasser.

  • Excessive traffic-people and cars at a certain residence

This activity is not necessarily suspicious unless it happens on a daily or regular basis, especially late at night or during unusual hours.  A legitimate home-based business may have some traffic, but if it seems excessive, the residents could be engaging in drug trafficking, prostitution or fencing of stolen goods.

  • Person carrying or moving personal property

Stories about burglars driving a moving van up to a house and taking everything in broad daylight are sometimes true.  Someone carrying personal property on the street or loading it into a car or truck, especially at an unusual time of day or night, could be a burglar.

  • Excessive personal property stored in cars or garages

Unless the person is running a garage sale a large accumulation of property represents stolen goods.  Especially notice if there are several of the same type of item such as four stereos in the garage.

  • Someone going door-to-door in a residential area

Young children selling cookies or legitimate solicitors may have a reason to knock on neighbor's doors.  But if someone seems to be randomly going up to doorways, it could be a burglar or a person who is part of a burglary  team.  Pay particular attention if one person goes around the side of the house while the other stays at the front door.

  • Forcible entry to a house or car

This person could have forgotten his keys, or he could be trying to steal something.