The Bakersfield Police Department's Community Relations team issued safety tips during the holiday season on the NextDoor App Monday morning.
Community Relations Specialist Kelsey Taylor posted "law enforcement sees an increase in crimes that are often preventable. Being aware of what attracts criminals to your home will help decrease your chances of becoming a victim."
Taylor posted the following tips for residents to protect themselves.
- Do not display your Christmas tree and gifts in a window without blinds or curtains. Remember that criminals know that valuables are under the tree.
- Do not leave packages on your porch. Make arrangements with a friend, relative, or neighbor to receive your packages if you will not be home during delivery.
- Hide the evidence of all the great gifts you received. By placing our gift’s boxes outside we are promoting to criminals all the valuables your home has acquired during this holiday season.
- Make sure to cut down the gift’s boxes and place them in black plastic bags to discard.
- Trim all trees that obstruct light around your home, and trim bushes back from windows and doors. Darkness and foliage can provide a hiding place for criminal activity. By eliminating these elements, you are protecting your home.
- Leave your outside lights on at night, and encourage your neighbors to do the same. A well-lit neighborhood is a crime deterrent.
- Invest in new technology for home security, such as a doorbell camera. Cameras such as these are a deterrent because most times, they are motion activated and you can speak to whoever is at your door via smartphone.
- If you are going to be away from home, please make your home appear to be occupied. Put your lights on timers and leave a radio or T.V. on.
- When out shopping, if you want to put gifts you just purchased in your vehicle and continue shopping, put them in your trunk or out of sight, and move your vehicle to another parking spot.
- Make sure your vehicle is locked with the windows rolled up when you park anywhere.
- As always, remember to lock your doors, windows, and garage. Remember, criminals are opportunists; do not give them the opportunity to spoil your holiday season by making you a victim.