HOW CITIZENS CAN HELP THE POLICE
From a police standpoint we ask that whether it is about school safety or your residents that you:
- Know what is normal around your school or your neighborhood.
- If anything looks abnormal, CALL THE POLICE IMMEDIATELY. You don’t know how many times police question people after a crime only to find out that they saw something suspicious but didn’t want to bother the police. PLEASE, PLEASE bother us. In fact, you’re not bothering us one bit! It’s what made us want to be a police officer. We’d rather check out something suspicious to find out it was nothing than to miss out on deterring or solving a crime.
- If you hear of something dangerous let the police know. Your call only alerts the police, we will investigate and determine if a crime occurred or is about to occur.
- If someone comes to your house that you do not know. You do not have to answer if you feel uncomfortable. Call the police. Burglars frequently knock on doors to see if anybody is home, then they look in windows then they break in. If you come to the door, they have to have an excuse: lost, out-of-gas, looking for a fictitious person, etc. Red flags should go up. Call the police. Nowadays, most people have smartphones and GPS’s. It very well maybe a fictitious story and they are probably up to no good. Pay attention to license plates, description especially tattoos, something unique about the person. Do not confront the person. Just call us.
- Scammers frequently target the elderly and want to pave their driveway or cut some trees. While one distracts the resident the other is going through their house. Call the police to have them check them out.
- Citizen involvement is our best way of deterring crime.
- Go on the link titled RI Most Wanted website. It’s interesting and you may recognize someone you know who is wanted by the police. If you do, you can call it in anonymously.
Tips on How to Keep Yourself and Property Safe
- Lock your doors and windows. Draw your blinds.
- Use lighting; have timers so people can’t easily track whether you are home or not. It’s safer to come home to a lighted house and relatively cheap. You can also put a radio or TV on a timer.
- Make it look like somebody is home. Don’t go off and leave your newspaper on the driveway, empty barrels by the curb, or mail in the mailbox.
- Invest in an alarm and a dog can act as a deterrent as well.
- Routinely park your car in your garage so people cannot track you or break in to the car.
- Hide your garage control remote control; once inside your car they could easily be in your house.
- Hide your valuables in your house where nobody else would find them.
- Keep valuables in your car hidden. If they see a $10 bill in the console; they’ll break the window which will cost you $200 to replace. GPS’s are a very hot item.
- Don’t display to the world what valuables you have inside your house. Stand outside and see what you can see inside if you were a burglar. Safes, laptops, tablets, electronics, jewelry, cash, etc. are very enticing because they are easily carried and converted into cash.
- Trim your bushes so people can see burglars looking into windows.
- Spare keys should be placed in a secure location. Burglars know the places where they are frequently placed. Think outside the box.
- Most people who work in your house (maids, electricians, plumbers, etc.) are honest people but don’t tempt them. Keep your valuables in a safe place when they are there. Get references.
- Think: if I was a burglar how would I get into my own house and then take steps to secure.
- Use deadlocks; burglars frequently use a credit card and small knives to open a flimsy lock.
- Don’t leave notes for servicemen; it tells everybody that you’re not home and when you’ll return.
- If you go away on vacation, list your house with the police as a vacant property. Let only trusted friends know that you are gone. Have a friend check the residence to make it appear that someone is around. It also helps in the event of a water or electricity problem.