Thursday, December 31, 2009

Daytime House Break-In’s

Tips from the Winston-Salem Police Department,
Officer Ryan M. Hagan
Support Services Bureau
Crime Prevention Unit
Winston Salem Police Department
725 N. Cherry St.
Winston Salem, NC 27102
Desk: (336) 726-2029
Pager: (336) 721-6284
fax: 773-7995

Recently, the Winston Salem Police Department has seen an increase in daytime house break in’s. The suspects are completing these housebreakings by ringing doorbells or knocking to see if anyone will answer the door. If no one answers the door, the suspect will breech the front or back door to gain entry into the home. If someone does open the door, the suspect will make up a story saying that they have broke down, lost their dog, looking for work, etc. We would like to remind you to never open your door for someone that you do not know. It is suggested to acknowledge the persons presence at the door by saying, “go away,” “I’m calling the police,” etc. When you look outside to identify the subject at the door, get a good description: height, weight, age, clothing description, mode of travel (on foot or in a vehicle). Be as specific as possible, did the jacket have a different color liner, was their fur around the hood? Please report these incidents to the police as soon as possible by calling the non-emergency number (773-7700) or by dialing 911.

Crime Prevention Tips

· Most Important – Lock your doors and windows at all times. (Both your home and vehicle)
· Complete a home inventory of your property (see attached)
o Make
o Model
o Serial Number
o OAN (owner applied number, ie. NCDL#)
o Personal Identifiers (Scratch on top of TV, paint splatter, etc.)
o Take pictures of your property.
o Photograph jewelry (make a specific description of the item.)
§ Personal messages engraved in rings or pendants.
o Photograph old coins and document a value.
o If you have a safe, remember to lock it. Also, bolt it to the wall or floor. If you can move it, so can I.
o Secure your out buildings. Document serial numbers for your lawn equipment as well as your tools. Remember to lock the door.
o Cut off bushes at about 3 feet and tree limbs at 6 feet. This is to limit places to hide around the outside of your home.
o Maintain a lived in appearance while away from home.
§ Use timers for lights and radios
§ Have a trusted neighbor collect the mail and newspaper, or suspend those services while away.
§ Display alarm decals and signs.
o Close blinds and windows. By leaving them open you are allowing the criminal to window shop.
o Take part in neighborhood watch – attend meetings and take an active role.
§ The police can’t be on every street corner every second of the day. You are our best eyes and ears, and we need your help in catching those responsible.
o Garbage at Christmas Time
§ Don’t advertise items that you receive for Christmas. If you get a 60” LCD TV for Christmas, take time, cut the box up, and place it in the trash. Don’t just set the box on the curb.
o If you do the same thing every day, change your pattern a little each day. Criminals look for the easiest opportunity given to them.
o Home Repairs – Use trusted and reputable companies. They may not take anything, but tell their friends of the nice things that you have.

Please visit the Crime Prevention section of the Winston Salem Police Department website for more Crime Prevention information (

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