One of the most common calls the Pasco Sheriﬀ’s Office is called to investigate are burglaries or thefts from cars. These are crimes of opportunity and convenience and are easily preventable. By simply removing all valuables from your car and locking it each and every night, you can reduce the risk of becoming a victim of this crime.
PSO created the #9pmRoutine as a reminder for citizens to remove all valuables from their vehicles and ensure that cars, windows and doors are locked before heading to bed for the night. Tis routine removes opportunity from the triangle of crime, which also consists of ability and desire. By removing just one of these aspects from the triangle of crime, the risk of becoming a victim is reduced. Here are some steps to include to build a strong #9pmRoutine and reduce elements of opportunity of crime:
Remove all valuables from your car. Create a habit of removing any valuables from your car when you park to ensure your items are safe. Never leave shopping bags or merchandise visible in your car while you’re away. Lock expensive purchases out of sight in the trunk, or take them home immediately before continuing shopping trips.
Close and lock all windows and doors to your car and home. Many burglaries occur because a car or home was left unlocked, making it easy for criminals to steal their belongings.
Tieves commonly test a door to see if it’s unlocked and quickly move on when they’re not able to enter easily. Enabling your car’s alarm consistently, if equipped, is a good habit as well.
Be smart with your car and house keys. Easily accessible car keys are the simplest way for a criminal to steal a car. Always remove the key or key fob from your car when you get out, even if parking in your own garage. Leaving car doors unlocked can provide easy access to other ways to access your property, such as garage door openers. Never leave spare keys hidden within your car or near an entry point of your home, as criminals know where to look.
If you see something, say something! Be vigilant and report any suspicious activity you see to law enforcement immediately. Rapid reporting can help prevent your neighbors from becoming a victim. Be sure to provide the date and time you saw unusual activity and include as much information as possible to identify the suspect.
Taking a few minutes each night to remove valuables and lock your car and home can prevent you from becoming a victim in this crime of opportunity. The #9pmRoutine is a simple and fast crime prevention step that can have a big impact on crime!