As the holiday season creeps up, the Fans of the Gulf Coast Sheriff’s Office have noted that our officers are much busier than any other time during the year. Their caseloads rapidly increase with holiday crime including shoplifting, home invasions, robberies, simple assault and car accidents. Now, not to make light of family violence, but the local assault numbers usually increase because of the increased number of family gatherings that happen around the holidays—and the only way to prevent these is to avoid these gatherings or avoid your family at these gatherings. But here are five other steps you can take to prevent crime.
1. Be alert and observant. If something or someone looks suspicious, do not hesitate to call the Gulf Coast Sheriff’s Office. They’ve told us that they’d much rather respond to a call where it turns out everything is okay than to have a citizen not call and something bad occurred Plus, you’d get a visit from a Gulf Coast Sheriff’s Office deputy! Who wouldn’t want that?
2. Lock the doors to your car and home. Duh. This should be a total no-brainer, but you would be shocked at the number of doors unlocked at the local grocery store on any given night. Protect yourself, dear citizens. Take the nanosecond required to click your doors locked.
3. Don’t drink and drive. Or drug and drive. Car services abound nowadays, so there is absolutely no excuse to drive while impaired. Plus, it’s super expensive. Do you know how much your insurance rates would skyrocket? Do you know how much it would cost to have an attorney represent you in court? Do you know what court costs and probation fees run these days? Can you even imagine the devastation that would haunt you the rest of your life if you injured someone or worse, caused them to sustain fatal injuries? So just don’t drive while impaired, okay?
4. Arrange for someone to secure your packages that are delivered while you are not home. A pile of six big boxes sitting idly on your doorstep is very tempting even for the most subdued thief. Since most delivery services inform you ahead of time when to anticipate your package, either arrange for someone to bring it inside for you or have your packages delivered to the post office. You don’t want to unduly tempt would-be thieves.
5. Bring a buddy shopping! There’s always safety in numbers, so if you have friends, ask them to go shopping with you. Better yet, bring your mother-in-law with you. That way, she can help you pick out everyone’s presents and there will be nothing for her to complain about during the annual holiday gift exchange!
Not all crime can be prevented, but our honorable men and women of the Gulf Coast Sheriff’s Office have provided some excellent tips on how to keep your home and your family safe during the upcoming holiday season. If you see a member of the Gulf Coast Sheriff’s Office while you are out and about doing your holiday shopping, be sure to wave!