Recently the Department investigated burglaries on Tremont Street and Willow Street. Entry was apparently made through unlocked windows. The incidents occurred during the overnight hours. Evidence was collected at the scenes. The investigations are ongoing.
In light of these recent and similar incidents throughout the county, the Garden City Police Department urges residents and business owners to take extra precautions in protecting their properties. To assist, Garden City Police Commissioner Kenneth Jackson reminds residents and business owners of the following steps that can be taken to better secure their property:
• Keep all doors and windows locked when you are home, away, or just in your backyard.
• Check windows and door locks; make sure they are in working order.
• Homeowners should consider additional locking devices specifically for sliding doors and alarms.
• If you have an alarm, use it at all times, even if you are leaving the residence for just a few minutes.
• Trim overgrown shrubbery and trees where someone could conceal themselves.
• Check exterior lighting; this includes the back and sides of the home. Ensure lights go on at dusk.
• Move and secure items that could be used to facilitate entry through ground floor windows.
• Close your drapes, blinds, and window treatments at night as a deterrent.
• Keep valuables, money, and car keys away from windows or doors where they can be seen by someone looking in.
• Surveillance and alarm systems should be routinely checked to ensure proper operation.
• Consider a panic alarm or keeping a telephone near the bed.
• Leave an interior light on or use a timer. Leave a radio or television on when out of the house.
• Discontinue any deliveries while away on business or vacation.
• Ensure that deliveries delivered to your residence are removed promptly by a family member or neighbor.
• Inventory, photograph, and have an appraisal conducted on valuable items.
• When approaching or leaving your home, be aware of suspicious persons or vehicles.
• Varying your routine can be an additional deterrent.
• Do not enter your residence if you think someone may be inside; notify the police immediately.
• If you hear or see someone in your home, exit if you can and discretely call the police right away.
• Do not try to confront the intruder.
• If a burglar does confront you, remain calm; comply with the burglar’s instructions. Remember, your life is more valuable than your property. Try to memorize a description of the subject. When the subject leaves, call the Police by dialing 911.
In addition to these recommendations, the Garden City Police Department urges all residents to be aware of suspicious activity around them and to call 911 promptly during the following situations:
• Call when your alarm or a neighbor's house/car alarm goes off.
• Call when suspicious noises or persons are in your or your neighbor’s yard.
• Call when you see a suspicious person and/or vehicle.
• Try to obtain a plate number and a good description of suspicious vehicles.
• Try to obtain a good description of all suspicious persons and/or possible suspects.
• Call when you observe activity at a neighbor’s residence when you know they are away.
• If you see a door or window to a neighbor's home ajar, open or broken, call the police.
• If you see a neighbor's car door or window ajar, open, or broken, call the police.
• Call when your dog barks due to some activity outside, particularly at night.
Neighbors can help the Police Department in the prevention of burglaries and the apprehension of suspects. There have been numerous incidents where the keen observation of residents has resulted in the apprehension of persons committing criminal acts. In addition, residents with surveillance systems are encouraged to notify the Police Department when it is possible their system recorded a crime or other suspicious activity on their property, in the street, or on an adjacent property. Surveillance systems, such as video systems, Ring cameras, and Nest cameras, have proven to be effective in preventing criminal acts and the apprehension of suspects.
Residents can register their address on the Police Department’s website, advising that they have video surveillance footage upon request. Residents with Ring Cameras may join the Ring Neighborhood App to allow sharing of video footage with their local Police Department.