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Tips to Prevent Burglary
The Firestone Police Department wants to help reduce your chance of having a burglary to your home or vehicle. The most important think you can do it call the police to report a crime or any suspicious activity. You are the eyes of your neighborhood and a large part of our community policing efforts.

Home Burglaries

  • Make your home look occupied, and make it difficult to break in.
  • Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed.
  • Keep your garage door closed and locked.
  • Don't allow daily deliveries of mail, newspapers or flyers build up while you are away. Arrange with the Post Office to hold your mail, or arrange for a friend or neighbor to take them regularly.
  • Arrange for your lawn to be mowed if you are going away for an extended time.
  • Check your locks on doors and windows and replace them with secure devices as necessary.
  • Pushbutton locks on doorknobs are easy for burglars to open. Install deadbolt locks on all your outside doors.
  • Sliding glass doors are vulnerable. Special locks are available for better security.
  • Other windows may need better locks. Check with a locksmith or hardware store for alternatives.

Don't Tempt a Thief

  • Lawn mowers, barbecues and bicycles are best stored out of sight.
  • Always lock your garden sheds and garages.
  • Use curtains on garage and basement windows.

Targeting the Outside

  • Have adequate exterior lighting. A motion-sensitive light is recommended for backyards.
  • Trim trees and shrubs so that they cannot be used as hiding places for intruders.
  • Make sure your door hinges are on the inside.

Alarms

  • An alarm system is excellent for home security. It provides peace of mind to homeowners, especially while on vacation.
  • If you have a home alarm system, use it! Activate your alarm system — alarm systems are only useful when you remember to activate them.
  • Many individuals have alarm systems but do not arm them because it is inconvenient. Many burglars know this and will not be deterred by a window sticker or sign indicating that the home has an alarm system.

If Your Home Is Broken Into

If you come home to find an unexplained open/broken window or door:

  • Do not enter - the perpetrator may still be inside.
  • Use a neighbor's phone to call police.
  • Do not touch anything or clean up until the police have inspected for evidence.
  • Write down the license plate numbers of any suspicious vehicles.
  • Note the descriptions of any suspicious persons.

Other precautions you should take:

  • Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other “secret” hiding places -- burglars know where to look for hidden keys.
  • Keep a detailed inventory of your valuable possessions, including a description of the items, date of purchase and original value, and serial numbers, and keep a copy in a safe place away from home — this is a good precaution in case of fires or other disasters. Make a photographic or video record of valuable objects, heirlooms and antiques. Your insurance company can provide assistance in making and keeping your inventory.
  • Trim your shrubbery around your home to reduce cover for burglars.
  • Be a good neighbor. If you notice anything suspicious in your neighborhood, call 9-1-1 immediately.
  • Mark your valuables with your driver's license number with an engraver you can borrow from your precinct. Marked items are harder for a burglar to dispose of and easier for police to recover.
  • Form a Neighborhood Watch Group. We can help you work with your neighbors to improve security and reduce risk of burglary.
  • Consider installing a burglar alarm system.

Car Burglaries

Tips on how to avoid car break-ins:

  • Do not leave valuables in plain view: (GPS devices, lap tops, PDA’s, cell phones, MP3’s, wallets, purses)
  • Do not leave windows or sunroof open.
  • Do not leave doors unlocked.
  • Do not leave keys in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave the garage door opener in plain view.
  • Do not leave out items with personal information.
  • Do not move valuable items to the trunk while in public view.