With the holiday shopping season about to start, the Garner Police Department has issued a list of tips to keep yourself and your family safe during the holidays. The Garner Police Department will be looking for violators this holiday season, with an emphasis by their Special Operations Division on retail theft, larceny of purses, break-ins to motor vehicles, and DWI’s. Officers will have “zero tolerance” on these offenses, and offenders can expect to be arrested and taken to jail. Garner police officers will also be proactively patrolling shopping centers and highways to make this holiday season safe for residents and visitors. Everyone is reminded to call 911 to report any suspicious activity.
Here are some suggestions on ways you can make your holidays safer and more enjoyable.
• Don’t drink and drive. Have a designated driver or take a taxi.
• Beware of strangers approaching you for any reason. At this time of year, con-artists may try various methods of distracting you with the intention of taking your money or belongings.
• Do not leave your purse unattended in shopping carts.
• Never park in an unlit area, no matter how convenient it may be.
• Lock your packages and gifts in the trunk of your vehicle. Lock car doors and keep windows closed.
• Dress casually and comfortably and avoid wearing expensive jewelry.
• Always carry your driver’s license or identification along with necessary cash, checks and a credit card you expect to use.
• Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Pay for purchases with a check or credit card when possible.
• Be extra careful if you do carry a wallet or purse. They are the prime targets of criminals in crowded shopping areas, transportation terminals, bus stops, on buses and other rapid transit. Carry a purse under your arm. Keep a wallet in an inside jacket pocket, not a back trouser pocket.
• Even though you are rushed and thinking about a lot of things, stay alert to your surroundings.
• Avoid overloading yourself with packages. It is important to have clear visibility and freedom of motion to avoid mishaps.
• Teach children to go to a store clerk or security guard and ask for help if you become separated. They should never go into a parking lot alone.