It's the holiday season and Sheriff Patrick Ray wants to remind you of some tips to guard against being a victim of crime.
Sheriff Ray says “This time of the year, we are asked to donate money to certain groups of people or civic organizations, including some within the county. There are scammers who are calling people within the county and asking for donations. If you want to make monetary donations to these groups, be sure the groups are legitimate and make sure they are collecting donations. Ask the caller to give you a phone number where you can call back and make the donations. Then hang up and investigate by calling the organization to make sure they are taking donations."
Sheriff Ray adds "Also this time of the year is when we see a rise in burglaries within the county. Statistics show that burglaries account for nearly one-third of the index of crimes in the United States. We as law enforcement officials ask you to be alert within your neighborhood.
• Always lock your doors and windows when you leave your home.
• Leave a key to your residence with a family member or trusted friend.
• When not at home, use a timer to turn lights off and on within your residence.
• Make sure to secure items such as four wheelers, go carts, motorcycles, and lawn mowers in a garage or chain them to a tree.
• Recognize suspicious activities such as strange vehicles driving slowly back and forth on the roadway or strange people going door to door, especially the rear doors of homes.
• Be aware of people selling items such as power tools, guns, or jewelry at a very low price. These items may be stolen.
If you see a suspicious person or vehicle within your neighborhood, get the basics- Who, What, When, and Where. Know WHO the person is and get a good clothing description as well as the make, model, color, and tag number of the vehicle when available. Know WHAT the person or vehicle was doing, and WHEN this occurred. Know WHERE the person or vehicle is or where they were last seen. While all this information is very valuable to law enforcement, you should never put yourself in danger to retrieve this information.”
Call the Sheriff's Department for more information or to report a crime or suspicious activity at 597-4935.