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Beating burglars / Chief Leon Krolikowski

Published 1:29 pm, Thursday, July 17, 2014
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Recently, the New Canaan Police Department, as well as neighboring jurisdictions have seen an increase in reported burglaries.

Most burglars are not master criminals. They're usually looking for an easy opportunity to get into a house without being seen. Burglars love it when you make their job easier for them.

Here are some tips that will help you beat the burglar:

Be wary of unknown visitors. Always check the identity of visitors before admitting them to your home. Often unsolicited offers to perform work (chimney repairs, driveway repairs, etc.) are scams or a ruse to commit a crime. Contact our department at 203-594-3500 if you see suspicious persons or vehicles.

Be a good neighbor. Get to know your neighbors, watch out for them and report suspicious activity in your neighborhood immediately. Prevention is the best cure.

Don't leave clues you are away. If you go on vacation, never leave clues that you are away. Cancel newspaper deliveries and have someone pick up your mail or have it held at the post office. Never leave a message on your answering machine telling people you aren't home. Be careful of postings on social networks like Facebook -- burglars monitor these sites to see if you are away.

Don't let burglars hide. Keep bushes and trees well-trimmed away from the front of your home especially near doors and windows and along pathways. Hedges provide a hiding place for burglars to work behind.

Never leave the keys to your home or car inside a vehicle or in a place where a thief can find them. Keys placed under a doormat, flower pot, mailboxes or other "secret" hiding places may invite a burglary. Burglars know where to look for hidden keys.

Light up your home. At night, keep the perimeter of your home well lit. Low energy lighting switched on and off by photoelectric sensors (low-light switches) is a cost-effective way to discourage burglars.

Lock up. Lock all doors and windows when you leave home, day or night, even for a short time. Burglars are opportunists and leaving a door or window open makes it easy for them.

Mark valuables. Mark your valuables with a unique identifying number using permanent (visible) or ultra violet (invisible) marker pen. Video and/or photograph as well as inventory all valuable or unique items.

Neighborhood watch. Work with your neighbors to improve security and reduce the risk of a burglary. Be the eyes and ears of the neighborhood-the most important thing you can do is call our Department to report a crime or anything suspicious.

Schedule a security survey. Contact our department at 203-594-3512 to schedule a free security survey. A trained police officer will survey your residence or business and will give you tips on how to protect your property.

Use your alarm system. Always activate your alarm system, even when you are at home, and whenever you leave your house -- even for a short time. Many successful burglaries that occur in our town involve houses that have alarm systems that were not activated.

Don't give the burglar a chance. Follow our advice to help keep your home and valuables safe.

Be better informed, connected, and send anonymous tips to our Department by downloading the "MYPD" application in the iPhone or Android marketplace. After downloading the application search for "New Canaan" and get connected.

You can contact me directly at 203-594-3512 or via e-mail at Leon.Krolikowski@newcanaanct.gov.