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Luncheon with the law: Police share crime prevention tips

Luncheon with the law: Police share crime prevention tips

October 17th, 2018 by Lori Dunn in Texarkana News

Kristi Bennett of the Texarkana, Ark., Police Department speaks to the public about crime prevention and safety at the Luncheon with the Law event Tuesday at the Bi-State Justice Center in Texarkana. Bennett spoke of how to avoid situations that could possibly be an invitation for crime to occur, security tips for home and what to do if one is a victim of a crime.

Photo by Hunt Mercier /Texarkana Gazette.

Crimes of opportunities are some of the most common crimes in Texarkana and police encourage citizens to stay vigilant and protect themselves and their property.

Criminal trends and prevention, neighborhood watches, surveillance camera registration, and community-oriented policing were all discussed Tuesday at at Texarkana, Ark., Police Department's Luncheon with the Law at the Bi-State Justice Building.

"Crimes of opportunities are when someone is walking down the street, it's dark out, there is nothing to do and they start popping door handles," said Kristi Bennett, TAPD public information officer.

Thefts and burglaries are the most common crimes in Texarkana, Ark., Bennett said.

"The criminals are looking for a quick buck, something they can pawn and make money off of," she said.

Kristi Bennett of the Texarkana, Ark., Police Department speaks to the public about crime prevention and safety at the Luncheon with the Law event Tuesday at the Bi-State Justice Center in Texarkana. Bennett spoke of how to avoid situations that could possibly be an invitation for crime to occur, security tips for home and what to do if one is a victim of a crime.

Kristi Bennett of the Texarkana, Ark., Police Department...

Photo by Hunt Mercier /Texarkana Gazette.

There were 138 vehicle burglaries reported between April and October in Texarkana, Ark., according to TAPD.

Out of those 138 incidents, 81 of the vehicles were unlocked. The owners of 30 of the other vehicles could not tell police for sure whether their vehicle was locked.

The most obvious way to prevent these crimes is to always lock your vehicle, Bennett said.

Police also advise residents:

  •  Remove valuables such as firearms from vehicles overnight.
  •  Do not leave a garage door opener in plain view
  •  Park in well-lit area
  •  Pay attention to anything suspicious in your neighborhood.

To prevent thefts inside your home, police encourage the following tips:

  •  Never allow a stranger in your home.
  •  Do not advertise on social media that you live alone or that you are going to be out of town at a specific time.
  •  Install a driveway alarm
  •  Install security camera
  •  Get a dog

Police also advise residents get to know their neighbors and stay alert to any changes in the neighborhood.

Bennett said many neighborhood watch groups are starting social media groups and keeping each another informed of things that occur in their neighborhood.

"They talk about everything from someone speeding in their neighborhood to damaged mail," she said.

Police advise if a group does this online, they should check their privacy settings and make sure the public does not have access to confidential information.

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