Hello everyone! With the giving season upon us, I thought I would focus this month’s newsletter on safeguarding you from those intent on doing harm.
It’s no secret that many communities have experienced a recent uptick in violent crime.
No matter where you live, crime is something that should concern ALL of us. We have a vested interest in protecting ourselves and our families in what’s become an increasingly violent world.
The holiday season is traditionally a time when crime rises further. That motivated me to share a handful of my own personal safety tips to help you remain safe both inside and outside of your homes.
Hopefully those I’ve listed below will serve as a friendly reminder to those you may already be familiar with. With that in mind, I offer you the following…
- #1- ALWAYS lock your doors – whether you’re home or not.
- If you leave your windows open for ventilation,
- Secure them with a stick to lessen the chance they can be further forced open.
- Drill screws into the upper or lower tracks to prevent someone from lifting the window out to gain entry.
- Consider nighttime security lighting around the outside perimeter of your home.
- Keep trees and shrubbery trimmed back to prevent blocking the view of your front doors and windows.
- If you have an intrusion alarm – use it – whether you’re home or not.
- Equip your front door with a ‘peephole’ at eye level.
- DO NOT open the door for ANYONE you DO NOT
- Have a ‘buddy’ system with your neighbors.
- DO NOT confront suspicious persons. Report them to your local police department.
- If you return home and it appears someone has burglarized your home, DO NOT
Go to a neighbor where you can watch your house while you call police.
- Keeping a firearm inside your home for protection is a personal choice. Just make sure you are properly trained in the care and use of the weapon. You should also be well-versed in your state’s laws on the use of deadly force.
There is no guarantee that my recommendations will prevent you from becoming the victim of a crime.
If you do become the victim of a crime, the best contribution you can make is to be a good witness for police. Below are some things to consider after the criminal escapes and you call 911.
- Go to a quiet place to calm yourself.
- Write down the best and most complete description possible.
- This should include the suspect’s approximate height, weight, clothing, tattoos or other accessories and artifacts, weapons, vehicle and direction of travel
- Describing the face should include facial landmarks such as eyes, nose, mouth, face shape and structure. Proportional relationships between the landmark features are especially important. Hairstyles and facial hair can be removed or further grown out by the time the suspect is identified are more useful if their unique in style and coloring. Moles, scars and facial tattoos cannot be easily removed or altered and may be valuable descriptors.
- Try to avoid well-intended guidance from others who offer suggestions or ask questions that can create doubt. A simple question such as, ”did he have a moustache?” Or a statement like, “I thought you said he had facial hair?” might create confusion that could send investigators in the wrong direction and negatively impact the investigation.
In my experience many crimes can be avoided by not placing yourself in a bad position. This includes walking in dark areas, taking unsafe shortcuts or being in an area you’re unfamiliar with. Many call this ‘Situational Awareness’. This means be aware of what’s going on around you. Something we ALL should consistently practice.
Sadly, this is the world we live in today. However, besides this being the season of giving, it’s also the season of hope. It’s my sincere wish that ALL of you enjoy safety, security and that we look out for one another.
For now, I think I’ll jump off my soapbox and get back to sketching!
Until next month, stay safe, be well and get out there and CREATE!