The holidays are a special time of year. It is also a time when individuals need to be alert to the possibility of crime. The Wayne Police Department encourages individuals to take simple precautions to ensure a happy and safe holiday. Please share these safety tips with your family, friends and neighbors.
While You're Out
- Park in a well-lit space and be sure to lock the car, close the windows, and hide shopping bags and gifts in the trunk.
- Walk confidently with your head up. Stay alert and be aware of what’s going on around you.
- Avoid carrying large amounts of cash; pay with a check or credit card whenever possible. When using credit cards, make sure that only one credit slip is printed.Wait until asked before taking out your credit card or checkbook.
- Dress down while shopping instead of wearing expensive clothing and jewelry.
- Deter pickpockets. Carry your purse close to your body or your wallet inside a coat or front pants pocket.
- Shopping with kids? Designate a central location to meet if you get separated. Teach them they can go to security or store personnel for help.
- Never leave your car running while you run inside—even if only for a minute.
- Tell a security guard or store employee if you see an unattended bag or package. The same applies if you are using mass transit.
- Pay attention to people walking in front of and behind you. Be particularly observant when you are in crowded areas.
- Do not buy more than you can carry. Plan ahead by taking a friend with you or ask a store employee to help you carry your packages to the car.
- Save all receipts. Start a file folder to keep all receipts together and to help you verify credit card or bank statements as they come in.
- Shop online with companies you know and trust. Check a company’s background if you are not familiar with it. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
- Use secure websites for purchases. Look for the icon of a locked padlock at the bottom of the screen or “https” in the URL address.
- Consider alternate options to pay for your merchandise, such as onetime or multi-use disposable credit cards or money orders, at online stores and auction sites.
- Print and save all confirmations from your online purchases.
Package Theft Prevention
Package thefts are crimes of opportunity. The Wayne Police Department would like to remind citizens to take extra care this time of year when having mail and packages delivered to their residence. Package thefts from doorsteps and front porches during the day usually increase between the months of October and January. There are steps you can take to be proactive in keeping your package safe from theft.
- Encourage family and neighbors to pick up packages as soon as possible after they are delivered.
- If you can’t be home, have packages delivered to a friend, family member or neighbor who will be home. Ask your employer if they can be delivered to your workplace.
- Have packages shipped so that a signature is required, that way, packages won’t be left if you’re not home.
- Use the ship-to store-method and pick up the packages there.
- Track your packages. Try to be present at the time of delivery. Many mail carriers allow you to track your shipment online:
- Be neighborly. If you can’t pick up your mail ask a neighbor to do it for you. The U.S. Postal Service can also hold your mail if you travel during the holidays.
- If sending a package, pay extra for insurance, tracking, and signature required.
- Contact your service provider to see if they provide free extra services.
- Always report suspicious activity immediately by calling 911.
Home Holiday Safety
The holidays are a joyous time of year. It is also a time when individuals need to be alert to the possibility of crime. The Wayne Police Department encourages individuals to take simple precautions to ensure a happy and safe holiday. Please share these safety tips with your family, friends and neighbors.
- The holidays are a good time to update—or create—your home inventory. Take photos or make videos of items, and list descriptions and serial numbers. If your home is burglarized, having a detailed inventory can help identify stolen items and make insurance claims easier to file. Make sure items like TVs, DVD & VCR players, stereo equipment, cameras, sports equipment, jewelry, silver, computers, personal electronic devices, office equipment, and power tools are on the list.
- Remember to break down boxes from gifts before putting them out for the trash or recycling.
- When returning to your home or auto have your keys in your hand ready to open the door. Check the inside of vehicles and lock the doors upon entering.
- If a stranger comes to the door, beware. Criminals sometimes pose as couriers delivering gifts. It’s also not uncommon for people to try to take advantage of others’ generosity during the holidays by going door-to-door for charitable donations when there’s no charity involved. Ask for identification, and find out how the funds will be used. If you aren’t satisfied, don’t give. Help a charitable organization you know and like instead.
- Celebrate responsibly. The holiday season is a time of celebration and revelry. Drinking and driving is a danger to everyone on the road. Anyone with a BAC of .08 or higher is in violation of Nebraska law and may go to jail. Remember that the risk isn’t worth it. If you choose to drink alcohol at a party, don’t drive. Take a cab, use public transportation, or a designated driver.
If You're Out for the Evening
- Turn on lights and a radio or TV so it looks like someone is home.
- Be extra cautious about locking doors and windows when you leave, even if it’s just for a few minutes.
- Don’t display gifts where they can be seen from outside.
If You're Traveling
- Get an automatic timer for your lights.
- Ask a neighbor to watch your home, shovel snow, and park in the driveway from time to time.
- Don’t forget to have mail and newspaper delivery stopped. If it piles up, it’s a sure sign you’re gone.