Tifton Gazette

Local News

November 20, 2012

Tifton Police Department offers holiday safety tips

TIFTON —

With Black Friday and the start of the holiday season being upon us, the Tifton Police Department is asking citizens to put safety and prevention at the top of their list.

Black Friday shopping has a lot of good deals, but it also brings the worst out in some shoppers. Be the exception, says Lt. Steve Hyman at the TPD.

“You’ll come across people willing to run you over for the best deal, but you don't have to be one of them. Take the high road. The few dollars you save isn't worth the consequence you may face getting into an argument or altercation over the merchandise,” he stated.

The holiday season is time for thieves, both in local neighborhoods and around shopping centers. The TPD is asking local citizens to be the eyes and ears of their neighborhood, local merchants and the police department.

“Simply taking a few seconds to report suspicious activities in your neighborhoods to the police and making merchants aware of would-be shoplifters will make this holiday season safer and more joyful, while preventing a friend or neighbor from becoming a victim to crime,” Hyman said. “We want to remind everyone as you get ready to go out looking for these good deals our local businesses are giving us or if you’re just leaving for a minute, lock your house securely and arm your alarm system. This is a perfect day for an intruder to target your home, since plenty of us are crawling the malls in search of those perfect presents.”

He also noted that when arriving in the parking lot, start checking things out before parking. Look around for people acting suspicious, setting in cars and walking aimlessly around the parking lot.

The following are shopping safety tips:

• Shop with your friends or relatives if possible; there is safety in numbers. Keep a close eye on your children while shopping.

• Avoid overloading yourself with packages. It is important to have clear visibility and freedom of motion to avoid mishaps. Use fewer bags, rather than juggling multiple bags; try to move your purchases into just a few bags.

• Carry your keys in your hand and be ready to unlock the door and enter as quickly as possible.

• Be aware of what is going on around you; make eye contact with people you meet, 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.

• Park in well-lighted areas, as close as possible to store entrances; be particularly aware of persons in the parking lot, especially near your car.

• If you have to wait for a ride, wait in a busy, well-lighted place.

• Keep your car doors locked! When shopping, keep gifts in the trunk or hidden from view in the interior of the car. Also, put all of your packages in the trunk before departing one parking lot and driving to another. Waiting until your next shopping destination allows others to see packages go into the trunk of your car and then you departing into the mall or store.

• Use a credit card to avoid thefts of cash that is irreplaceable. Shopping with a single credit card is preferable because it’s easier to cancel one, rather than several, if your wallet or purse is stolen.

• If you have access to a cellular telephone, carry it with you. Remember that 911 works on a cell phone, even those that are not activated. Also, avoid talking on a cell phone when walking to and from your vehicle to keep from being distracted by the conversation.

• Don't hesitate to notify Tifton police or store security if you see any suspicious activity.

The following are tips on theft prevention around neighborhoods:

• Trim bushes around windows — this eliminates the thieves and prowlers from using them as cover.

• Be extra cautious about locking doors, windows and garage doors, even when you’re at home, when you leave the house and if you will only be gone for a minute.

• If possible, check on your house at lunch or have someone watch it for you while you are at work.

• If there is a knock at your door, even if you do not feel comfortable answering, turn on a light, slam a door or something to let them know someone is at home.

• Activate your alarm if you have one, and if you are traveling, make arrangements with someone to keep an eye on your house for you.

• Don't put large displays of holiday gifts in view of your windows or doors.

• Even though you are rushed and thinking about a thousand things, stay alert to your surroundings; don't allow your attention to become distracted from your purse or packages.

• Record the serial numbers of your valuables and take photographs of them. Do the same thing with Christmas presents prior to wrapping them. Mark these items with your Georgia driver’s license or ID number.

• Break down boxes of expensive gifts and place them in bags when you throw them away, this keeps from advertising what you have in your home to people looking for things to steal.

• Watch out for your friends and neighbors; if you see someone plundering around, call 911. Promptly report suspicious persons, vehicles and crimes. If someone has a valid reason for being in your neighborhood or approaching people in a parking lot, they will not mind explaining that to a police officer.

“The majority of criminals are opportunists,” Hyman stated. “They see things that you leave lying out, not locked or you being distracted by something, and they take advantage of the situation.”

Citizens can prevent becoming a target by being aware and mindful of the tips above.

“Everyone has a role in making our community safe and helping to protect each other and each other’s property,” Hyman said. “It is harder for would-be thieves and other criminals to operate in a community where the citizens are alert. It increases their chances of getting caught. We would like for everyone to follow these tips and remind family members and friends to be more careful and aware during the holiday season.”

 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • IAAP 1.tif Leadership is key, no matter where you're going

    As part of Administrative Professionals Week, the Tiftarea Chapter of the International Association of Administrative Professionals hosted an Administrative Professionals Day luncheon Wednesday at the Tift Regional Medical Center Community Event Center at the Tiftarea YMCA. The event was jointly sponsored by The Tifton Gazette.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • cotton app-smartphone.tif Cotton irrigation app helps farmers manage water usage

    A new smartphone app developed by University of Georgia and University of Florida researchers will help cotton farmers in their states save one of nature’s most precious resources —water.
    George Vellidis, a scientist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and an expert in precision agriculture and water resources management, developed the app to help cotton growers irrigate their crops based on local conditions.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • TRMC computer system upgrade ‘monumental’

    On April 28, Tift Regional Health System will go live with a new computer system at Tift Regional Medical Center, the TRMC West Campus and Cook Medical Center, which hospital officials say in the long term will help improve efficiency and enhance patient care. There will be a period of transition which may slow work flow, and TRHS is asking for patience.

    April 23, 2014

  • Dewey Lee pic.tif Dewey Lee receives honor

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • relay for life.jpg Relay for Life this Friday in Tifton

    At Relay for Life events, communities across the globe come together to honor cancer survivors, remember loved ones lost and fight back against a disease that has already taken too much, according to Relay for Life.
    The public can get involved locally by attending the Relay for Life of Tift County, which kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday at the E.B. Hamilton Complex and Optimist Park with the opening ceremony. A survivor reception will be held at 6 p.m. at the pavilion.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Senior community looks to expand

    The senior community West Haven Senior Village is looking to expand. Joseph Carter with West Haven, along with Mandy Young with Affordable Equity Partners, did a brief presentation on the senior village at a recent City Council meeting.

    April 22, 2014

  • disabled artists.tif Disabled artists exhibit begins May 1 at Georgia Museum of Agriculture

    Fifty works of art crafted by artisans with disabilities will be on display at the Gallery at the Georgia Museum of Agriculture and Historic Village at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College beginning May 1.   Museum Assistant Director and Curator Polly Huff said the exhibit includes paintings, photographs, woodcarving, clay pottery, mosaics, textiles and other works.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stolen debit card returned

    Local law enforcement recently responded to several vehicle break-ins and damages and other incidents.

    April 21, 2014

  • Council disagrees on DDA borders

    At a recent city meeting, the City Council, with a 3-2 vote, approved the resolution providing the Downtown Development Authority amendment to boundaries, appointment of board members and for other purposes.
    Prior to voting, City Manager Larry Riner reminded the council that they had a couple of lengthy meetings regarding the boundaries of the DDA and the actual structure of the board itself. The council was provided with a boundary map, depicting the downtown development area.

    April 21, 2014

  • Employer seminar on labor laws to be held in Tifton

    The Tift Area HR/Employer Committee will sponsor a seminar on state and federal labor laws for employers. The seminar will be held May 16 from 8:30-11:30 a.m. at the Georgia Department of Labor’s Tifton Career Center, 310 South Tift Ave. Registration begins at 8 a.m.

    April 21, 2014

AP Video
House Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Seasonal Content
Business Marquee
Weather Radar
Video
SW Ga. Sacred Harp group at Folklife Festival in Tifton
Balloons released in Fitzgerald honoring fallen balloonist
Riding the Steam Train at Ga. Museum of Agriculture
Poll

Do you plan to watch any of the Republican National Convention?

Yes
No
     View Results
Poll

Are you better off now than you were four years ago?

No
Yes
     View Results
Poll

Do you plan to watch any of the Republican National Convention?

Yes
No
     View Results
Poll

Do you plan to watch any of the Republican National Convention?

Yes
No
     View Results
Poll

Are you better off now than you were four years ago?

No
Yes
     View Results
Poll

Are you better off now than you were four years ago?

No
Yes
     View Results