Crime Prevention Tips

Crime Prevention Tips

Car Theft
On a cold winter morning it might seem like a good idea to start your car and let it warm up while you finish getting ready for work or school, but Durham police are warning people to be extra careful if they do this. Unattended cars warming in driveways and parking lots are easy targets for car thieves. Every winter, Durham officers take several reports from people whose vehicles were stolen in this manner.

Additional Car Theft Prevention Tips

  • If you warm up your car, use a 2nd key to lock the running vehicle
  • Never leave your keys in the car or ignition
  • Always roll up your windows and lock the car, even if it is in front of your home
  • Always park in busy, well-lighted areas
  • Install a mechanical device that locks to the steering wheel, column, or brake to prevent the wheel from being turned more than a few degrees
  • Investigate the purchase of an auto security system if you live in a high-theft area or drive a theft-prone vehicle
  • Carry your registration and insurance card with you. Don't leave personal identification documents or credit cards in your vehicle
  • Copy your license plate and vehicle identification (VIN) numbers on a card and keep them with your driver's license. If your vehicle is stolen, police will need this information promptly

Car Break-Ins

  • Be aware of your surroundings and your neighbors
  • Do not leave packages in plain view inside your vehicle. Put them in the trunk or cover them up
  • Do not leave valuables in your vehicle such as:
  • Cash
  • Cassette tapes, CDs
  • Cellular phones and chargers
  • Detachable stereo covers
  • Important papers and documents
  • Laptop computers
  • Loose change
  • Palm pilots
  • Radar detectors
  • Sports equipment
  • Keep a record of serial numbers for stereo equipment, amplifiers, and other personal items
  • Park your vehicle in a well-lighted area
  • Report suspicious activity to 911 immediately - when in doubt, call 911
  • Secure your vehicle at all times. Lock your doors and do not crack open your windows even in the summertime

Robberies from Persons

  • Avoid loiterers or people hanging out in groups
  • Be aware of your surroundings. If you see anything suspicious, do not hesitate to call 911
  • Do not carry extra cash or valuables
  • Do not let strangers inside your apartment. Use your peephole to see who is at the door
  • Do not walk alone at night. Darkness gives robbers an advantage
  • Have your keys ready when you approach your apartment or vehicle
  • If someone follows you, do not drive home. Go to a well-lit place and report it
  • Park in a well-lit area of the apartment complex
  • Walk briskly and with confidence