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Crime Awareness

SAN ANTONIO POLICE DEPARTMENT

Crime Prevention Unit

Safety at Home

  • Keep doors and windows locked at all times. Doors should have a one-inch dead bolt and a door viewer. Look before opening your door to anyone.
  • Leave outside lights on when it is dark outside.
  • Never come home to a dark house.
  • Before leaving your house, take a minute to look outside and see what is going on. Take time to be aware of your surroundings.
  • Don't let a stranger inside your house to use the phone. Make the call for him.
  • If you haven't called for a repairman, don't let one inside your house. Leave him outside and call his place of business to verify his reason for being in your area.
  • Never admit to anyone that you or a neighbor live alone.
  • Women living alone should use only initials on mailboxes and in phone book listings.
  • Report suspicious activities to the police immediately.
  • If you receive an obscene phone call, hang up immediately. Don't react.
  • Be careful of the message you leave on your answering machine. Never tell people you are not at home.

Safety Tips While Driving

  • Never pick up hitchhikers.
  • Keep car doors locked at all times.
  • Before leaving your house or the store to go to your car, look around and be aware of what is going on.
  • Always have your keys ready to unlock the door so you can enter without delay.
  • As you are entering your car, look into the back seat.
  • Always have at least half a tank of gas in your car.
  • Keep your vehicle in good shape.
  • Travel on well-lighted streets and avoid taking short cuts.
  • If you are followed, drive to the nearest open business for help or drive to the police or fire department. Never go home while being followed.
  • Park in areas that will be well lighted when you return to your car.
  • Don't leave your house keys with your car when having your car serviced.
  • Women driving alone should never stop to aid a stranger in a stalled car. Proceed to an open business and report the car to the police.
  • If you have car trouble, raise the hood, then stay in your car. When someone offers assistance, do not roll the window down. Talk to them through the window and ask them to call someone for you. Never go with a stranger.
  • Notify your family and friends of your travel plans.

Safety Tips While Walking

  • Avoid walking alone. Walk with someone or where other people are near.
  • Stay in well lighted areas, away from alleys, bushes, and entry ways. Avoid shortcuts through parks, vacant lots, and other deserted areas.
  • Don't hitchhike or accept rides from strangers.
  • If a car pulls along beside you and the driver calls you over to ask a question, avoid getting near the car.
  • If you are followed, go to the nearest business for help. Turn around and walk in the other direction. This will force the driver to turn around to follow you.
  • Avoid carrying extra money or valuables on your person. If you must carry a purse, keep it close. Don't dangle it.
  • Remember to be aware of your surroundings and the people around you.
  • Don't walk alone, especially at night. Your vulnerability to street crime is reduced as much as 70 percent by simply being in a group.

Tips for Dating and to Singles

  • Don't go to or leave from a club alone. You are safer in numbers.
  • Don't accept blind dates.
  • Don't accept rides from strangers.
  • Don't take a first time acquaintance home.
  • If you must leave with a first time acquaintance, make sure a friend knows the person and where you're going.
  • Don't go to private places on a date until you are better acquainted.
  • Don't give out personal information until you are better acquainted.

AUTO THEFT PREVENTION

Reduce your chances of being a victim of auto theft by following these tips:

  • Lock your car. Take the keys.
  • Never hide a spare key on the vehicle.
  • Roll up windows completely.
  • Park in well lighted areas.
  • Park as close as possible to an open business.
  • Do not leave valuables insight to tempt a thief.
  • If you have a garage, use it and lock your garage door.
  • Never leave your car running while it is unattended.

Calling the Police after a vehicle theft

A vehicle theft should be reported as soon as possible. However, before the vehicle can be listed as stolen, you must have your vehicle's license plate number and/or the vehicle identification number (also known as the VIN number).

After you phone in the necessary information, you may be asked to wait a short period of time for the police officer to call you back. A desk duty officer will take your report over the telephone. By making a report over the phone, the needed information about your vehicle can be entered directly into the police department's computer system. This enables police officers to immediately identify your vehicle as being stolen.

Burglary and Theft

A burglary is the act of entering a home or apartment, or building, not open to the public, with the intent to commit a crime.

A theft has been committed if someone unlawfully obtains property with the intent to deprive the rightful owner of it.

Apartment Dwellers Be Alert

  • Have you taken the proper action to prevent the possibility of becoming a victim?
  • Keep doors and windows locked at all times
  • If you move into a previously occupied apartment, make sure locks have been changed
  • Use a door peephole. Always acknowledge a caller at your door, but do not open it.
  • Some burglars ring the doorbell, and if there is no answer, they break in.
  • Use latching devices on all windows. In many cases entry is made through a window.
  • Window latches that secure both the inside and outside can provide another effective means of thwarting the would-be burglar.
  • Use secondary locks on sliding glass doors. Usually, a sliding door is secluded from the public view, making it a perfect place for thieves to enter. Keeping burglars occupied for several minutes trying to get a door or window open, will frustrate them and they will move on.
  • When away for an extended period of time, cancel mail and suspend newspaper delivery
  • Have a trusted neighbor watch your apartment while you are away. The watchful eyes of your neighbor are some of the best crime prevention tools available

Automatic Teller Machine and Night Deposit Safety

  • Protect the personal identification number (PIN) you use with your ATM. Do not write it on your card. Stand directly in front of the ATM when you enter your number so no one can look over your shoulder.
  • Try to have another person accompany you when using your ATM or night deposit
  • Be ready to conduct your transaction before you approach the ATM or Night Deposit. Conduct your business quickly and do not loiter in the vicinity.
  • At night, use an ATM or Night Deposit that is well lighted.
  • Be observant when you use your ATM or Night Deposit. Be cautious of anyone who is loitering around your ATM or Night Deposit. Do not stop to talk to strangers.
  • Leave quickly if you are approached while using ATM or Night Deposit
  • Put away your money as soon as you withdraw it from the ATM. Do not stand by the ATM and count your money. Do not openly carry money to your ATM or Night Deposit. Keep it concealed until you are ready to make the deposit.
  • Always take your receipt from the ATM. Do not leave it in the machine or lying on the ground nearby since the receipt shows your account number. 

 

 


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