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PREVENTIVE MEASURES  DPS Officer on Bike

Crime continues to be a problem.  Since law enforcement officers can't always be there to help, you must protect yourself.  Self-protection means knowing how to avoid becoming a crime victim and what to do in the event you do become a victim. For example, carry no more cash than is absolutely necessary.  Keep a list at home of your credit cards and account numbers, licenses and other valuables to make filing a report easier.  Read on for more safety tips.  

 

Crime continues to be a problem.  Since law enforcement officers can't always be there to help, you must protect yourself.  Self-protection means knowing how to avoid becoming a crime victim and what to do in the event you do become a victim. For example, carry no more cash than is absolutely necessary.  Keep a list at home of your credit cards and account numbers, licenses and other valuables to make filing a report easier.  Read on for more safety tips.   

AT WORK

  • Have your keys in your hand and ready to use before you get to your car.
  • Stay alert for suspicious-looking persons, especially at night. Keep your purse and other valuables out of sight.
  • Lock your desk when you leave your office, even if leaving only for a short time.
  • When working alone at night, notify security, keep your office door locked and request an escort to your car.
  • Wait for an empty elevator instead of riding alone with a stranger; if you do get on, stay close to the control panel and the alarm button.
AT HOME
  • Don't leave a note on the door saying you're not home.
  • Use only your last name and first initial on your mailbox and door and in the phone book.
  • Install a peephole so you can see who's outside before opening the door.
  • Don't depend on a chain lock--keep the door locked until you know who's outside.
  • Replace all locks when moving to a new house or apartment and USE them.
  • Draw the shades/curtains after dark and don't undress in front of a window.
  • Don't let strangers in to use the phone; make the call for them.
  • Demand to see the ID of salespeople, service people, and law enforcement officers before opening the door.  If they are legitimate, they will have proper identification.
  • If anonymous phone calls are made at certain times, someone may be checking to see if you're home--notify law enforcement.
  • Upon arriving home, have your house key in your hand and be ready to open the door.
  • Leave an outside light on so you can see anyone who might be waiting for you.
  • Keep emergency telephone numbers handy--you won't have time to look for them when you need them.
CALL LAW ENFORCEMENT IMMEDIATELY IF . . .
  • You return home and suspect someone is inside.  Don't enter or make noise; call from a neighbor's house.
  • You see or hear any suspicious sounds, activities, vehicles or people around your neighborhood.
WHILE WALKING . . .
  • Walk with someone to discourage thugs and muggers.
  • Stay in well-lighted areas and walk near the curb.
  • Keep away from alley entrances, entryways or shrubs where someone could be hiding.
  • Stay near people; avoid shortcuts through vacant parking lots, parks and other deserted areas.
  • Hold your purse close; don't dangle it.
  • Don't wear showy jewelry.
  • Don't accept rides with strangers.
  • Keep your distance from a car if the driver stops to ask you directions--you could be pulled inside.
  • Don't appear frightened.
  • Don't fight if your purse is snatched; you may risk injury.
BEING FOLLOWED BY SOMEONE ON FOOT
  • Remain alert.  Keep looking behind you as it may discourage your follower.
  • Cross the street, change directions and/or change your pace.
  • If he persists, go to a lighted home or store and call authorities.
BEING FOLLOWED BY SOMEONE IN A CAR
  • Turn around and walk in the other direction.
  • Go up a one-way street if possible.
  • If he persists, try to get his tag number and call authorities.
WHILE DRIVING . . .
  • Keep windows up and doors locked at all times.
  • Keep valuables such as your purse out of sight.
  • Don't pick up hitchhikers.
  • Don't stop to help a disabled vehicle.  Report it to law enforcement.
  • Leave enough room between you and the car in front to enable you to pull away.  Keep your car in gear, and if threatened, drive away, blowing your horn.  Intersections and stop lights are favorite targets for would-be attackers.
  • Raise your hood and stay inside with the doors locked if you have car trouble.  If a stranger stops, ask them to report your problem to the nearest garage.
  • If you're being followed by another driver, drive to a police station or an open business.  Don't try to leave your car or enter your driveway.
  • If you're being forced to the curb, don't stop.  Keep driving and try to get a tag number and a description of the car and driver.  Report the incident to law enforcement as soon as possible.
  • Park your car in a well-lighted area.  Lock the doors and pull all valuables in the trunk.  Have your key in your hand when you approach your car.  Check to be sure no one is hiding inside.
  • Don't leave the keys to your home with your car keys when leaving your car for repair or valet parking.

AFTER PARKING…

  • Don't leave doors and windows open. 
  • Walk to class or your car in a group or with a companion. 
  • Call an HCC Public Safety Officer to be escorted to or from your car.
  • Walk in well-lighted areas at night, even when in a group.
  • Stay alert and use your intuition. 
  • If you think you're being followed, change directions and walk toward a group of people.
  • Don't leave belongings such as purses, book bags and briefcases in plain view.
  • Be aware of strangers who appear suspicious or out of place, particularly if they are in a car and asking for information. Call HCC Public Safety at 813.253-7911 to request assistance.

 

 

HCC - Public Safety — 813.253.7911