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Reporting suspicious activity



Reporting suspicious activities requires raising your awareness level. That is, knowing what is normal or what is out of place; having a suspicion or a gut feeling something is wrong. The goal is to reduce criminal opportunities by reporting these suspicions to the police. This requires that you be both observant and aware of persons and events in your neighborhoods, work locations, and as you travel throughout the city. You must also overcome any reluctance you might have in reporting these observations to the police. The following is a general list of activities, which should be reported:

Suspicious person(s) engaged in the following:

  • Forcing entry into a house, garage or vehicle.
  • Running from a house.
  • Walking around a house, checking doors, windows, etc. or who appear to be attempting to hide from view.
  • Loitering in the neighborhood, appear out of place or are unknown to you.
  • Anyone with a weapon.
  • Any unusual noise, regardless of the time of day; for example, a scream, breaking glass, loud crashing sound, prying or any audible alarm.
  • Suspicious persons carrying what might be loot; as an example, radios, TV’s, stereo equipment, large sacks, bags or pillowcases which appear to be full might be indicative of criminal activity.
  • Any suspicious vehicle(s) parked on the street or in your neighbor’s driveway.
  • A solicitor who does not appear to have a valid reason for coming to your door, seems overly aggressive or forceful, appears hesitant, does a lot of unnecessary looking around, or asks unusual questions concerning you or your neighbors’ daily schedule or habits.

When reporting this information you should attempt to:

  • Get an accurate description of the individuals and vehicles involved, including license plate numbers.
  • Remain as calm as possible and give the dispatcher the details of your observations; the dispatcher relays the information to patrol cars that are en route to investigate.
  • Relay the exact location where the activity is occurring. It would be helpful if you provided your name, address and phone number in case some of the information needs later clarification. However, this is not absolutely required.
  • You can remain anonymous but be advised that this will limit the actions an officer can take. The important factor is to call anytime, day or night. You may be preventing a crime in progress or helping in the apprehension of a criminal.

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