Editorial: Secure Your Property

By / Editorials / Tuesday, 22 January 2019 05:15

Managing Editor

The current economy challenges many people with rising cost of living. Shopping more wisely at the grocery store. Find the cheapest gas prices; buy more fuel-efficient vehicles, etc.
The one side affect most people miss entirely is security. Desperate people in a good economy become even more dangerous and bold in a less than great economy. Many times over the years I have written reports about people stealing from vehicles and homes. The police always make the same comment - in frustration - that all people need to do is lock their car doors, install even a basic home alarm system, and not leave valuables out in plain sight.
That’s of course aside from those blatant arrogant criminals that will do anything to steal including breaking, entering, even with people in the home (called home invasion) and generally violating the law with no worries. (The most dangerous).
The typical crime in Carolina Beach and New Hanover County over the years is to simply walk a neighborhood street lifting vehicle door handles.
Surprisingly enough, there are a lot of cars left unlocked and packed with all kinds of valuable items just waiting to be stolen.
A simple solution? Lock vehicle doors and don’t leave valuables out in plain sight, or, don’t leave valuables in the vehicle to begin with. Thieves look for firearms and prescription drugs as well as common items like wallets. Invest in a vehicle alarm system. Park in your garage or install readily available floodlights that shine directly on your driveway.
Don't make your home an appealing target, keep valuables away from windows and doors, and lock up every time you leave. If you’re headed out of town, remember to stop delivery of your mail or get someone to pick it up for you to make sure that identity thieves don’t get it. Also, consider setting your lights on an automatic timer to make it look like someone is home. Shop during daylight hours and don't carry large amounts of cash. Use debit and credit cards which can be canceled with a phone call to the bank. Here are some basic tips before going on vacation:
1. Call the post office to stop mail and suspend newspaper delivery.
2. Get a few timers to turn several lights, the TV or radio on and off during the day and night.
3. If you have a second car, park it in the driveway
4. If you’ll be gone long, ask a neighbor to put some of their trash in your garbage cans
 5. Ask a friend or neighbor to house sit by dropping by regularly and checking up on things and picking up junk mail and flyers that can accumulate. (Remember to describe this house sitter to your neighbors, so burglars can’t claim to be house sitting and house sitters don’t get arrested.)
6. If you have a baby monitor, leave the monitor with a neighbor and the base unit turned
on at your home. If the security or smoke alarms go off, or if your neighbors hear something they shouldn’t, they can immediately call 911.
Recently the Carolina Beach Police apprehended a few people that were watching some condo properties on the waterway. They caught them. But they can't catch everyone all of the time.
And remember, if the police stop you at 4am in the morning when you're taking a casual walk, they're likely looking for suspects. Answers their questions politely. They're doing their job. You may be innocent, but they're looking for the many that are not innocent.


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