For many, “home” is more than a place; it’s a feeling. It’s safety and stability. That feeling is stripped away when criminals violate your home, leaving you feeling vulnerable and threatened instead.
The term “property crime” encompasses any crime against someone’s property. Often, property crimes are categorized into offenses including burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, shoplifting and vandalism. Property crimes may involve force or the threat of force, like robbery or extortion.
You have the power to reduce your likelihood of becoming a victim of property crime. Follow these tips from the Tallahassee Police Department (TPD) to strengthen your home’s protection.
Secure Your Car
Whether you park on the street or in a garage, make sure the area is well-lit. Always bring your valuables inside and lock your car doors, even if you only plan to be inside for a short time.
Walk Around Your Home and Scout Out Its Weaknesses
One of the best ways to protect your home is to look at it through the eyes of a burglar. When checking your house for vulnerabilities, see if expensive valuables are visible through the window and test the locking strength of your windows and doors. Keeping valuables out of sight and your home’s entry points firmly locked will help deter would-be criminals. If you would like help identifying your home’s weak spots, call the Tallahassee Police Department’s Community Relations Unit at 891‑4251. A specially trained police officer will come out to your location and help you perform a home assessment.
Install Motion Sensor Lighting Around Your Home
By installing motion sensor lights, you can put a spotlight on a potential intruder before he/she can get to your doors and windows. Having ample light surrounding your home will help eliminate dark corners for intruders to hide in. If you live in an apartment, ask management staff to install sufficient lighting around the complex and within its walkways and corridors.
Consider Purchasing a Home Security System
There are many, many reasons to purchase a home security system. Not only do they help keep your property and your loved ones safe, but typically, having a home security system will save you money on your insurance premiums. Security systems offer many features. Some include motion detectors, sensors on windows and doors, interior and exterior cameras and more. Select the features that best fit your needs and be sure to work with a well-known, reputable company. Additionally, dogs are known deterrents for would-be criminals. Consider adopting a dog from the City of Tallahassee’s Animal Service Center. Visit Talgov.com/Animals to view a photo gallery of dogs that would love to help protect your home.
Get to Know Your Neighbors and Consider a Neighborhood Watch Program
Your neighbors can be one of your best assets in crime prevention. They can help keep an eye on your property and easily spot strangers. Overall, crime tends to be lower in communities that are tight-knit. To help spur on your community’s commitment to crime prevention, consider starting a Neighborhood Watch Program. The Tallahassee Police Department can walk you through the process. Officers will even come speak with your apartment complex, home owner’s association or neighborhood group at a time, date and location that’s convenient for you. Call the Community Relations Office at 891‑4251 for more information about TPD’s Neighborhood Watch Program.
With these tried and true tips, your home will feel safe and sound. For more information about the Tallahassee Police Department, visit Talgov.com or call TPD’s non-emergency number at 891‑4200.
By Heather Teter, City of Tallahassee and Officer David Northway, Tallahassee Police Department (TPD)