The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

February 16, 2013

Crime shift: Enid police, sheriff's office seeing fewer violent crimes

(Continued)

ENID, Okla. — Preventing crimes

Niles said his office is working on getting property owners to take steps to prevent thefts and make it easier for stolen items to be recovered and returned. He said residents can take steps to help protect themselves from theft.

Vehicles should be kept locked and secured. All items of value should be removed from vehicles that will be parked for extended periods.

Morris said valuables need to be removed from vehicles, or better secured.

“For the ladies, put your purses in the trunk instead of leaving them inside the car,” he said. “Don’t leave expensive items like cellphones or computers in your car. If you’re going to leave those items in your car, leave them in your trunk.”

Morris said most burglaries from vehicles could be prevented by taking the simplest steps, such as locking car doors.

“The most simple auto break-ins are people checking if your car doors are locked, and if not, rummaging through your car,” he said.

Residents also can take measures to protect their homes from burglary.

“Make sure you have your porch lights on, hedges and shrubbery and trees cut back from windows and doors,” Niles said. “If you do go out of town, make sure you have your house placed on a watch list. Have a trusted friend or neighbor watch your house.”

Morris said good neighbors and neighborhood watch programs are some of the best preventative measures against crime.

“One good thing about neighbors is they watch out for one another,” he said.

Morris said most neighbors are aware of each other’s routines, and can spot something suspicious, or someone or something that does not belong.

“If something is suspicious, call us,” the captain said. “If you see someone that doesn’t belong there, or a car that’s not supposed to be there, don’t hesitate to have somebody come check it out.”

“We are trying to get out and educate company owners, businesses and individuals to make sure they record serial numbers on all their valuables,” Niles said. “That helps us tremendously in tracking down and recovering stolen items.”

Morris said as technology moves forward, scam sophistication does, too.

“There are a lot of these people who try to scam others, and they seem to target the elderly,” he said. “Things that seem too good to be true usually are. Nine times out of 10, it’s a scam.”

Morris said to be wary of prizes from contests you don’t recall entering.

“You’ve won $25 million, but you need to send us $2,000. Those are things people need to avoid,” he said. “If you truly won money, you’ be presented with that at your door.”

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