Teach your children:
Dial 911 if you see anyone climbing through a window in your neighborhood. This is considered suspicious activity and warrants a police investigation. Don't hesitate !!! We need your help in solving crime in Ashland.
Burglary is the crime most likely to affect people of any age. Burglars look for easy targets because most are amateurs, not accomplished professionals. They look for opportunities to get your valuables in the easiest, quickest possible way. There are several things that you can do as a home owner to discourage the thief by making it harder on the thief to accomplish his goal.
Secure Your Home!
Amazingly, statistic show that 30 to 50 percent of home and apartment breaking and enterings happen because someone didn't lock a door or window. In the case of windows, often they were even left open. There is no easier way of providing easy access to a burglar than an open door or window. Doors and windows should always be locked and secured, even if you are only leaving for a few minutes. A method that criminals have used is to wait for you to leave. Remember you want to make it as difficult as possible for anyone to get into your home. You want a burglar to take as much time and make as much noise before gaining entry into your home.
Most law enforcement officers suggest that residential doors should be equipped with a one-inch deadbolt lock. This type of lock can be purchased from a local locksmith or hardware store. An inside chain guard is no substitute for a proper lock. It is suggested that a wide-angle peephole be installed in the door to allow you to identify visitors without opening the door. It is far safer than a chain lock.
The best exterior door to a home is solid wood. Hollow core doors are to fragile and should never be used on the exterior. There are several ways of strengthening your security. If a door has a large piece of glass in it, you can install a metal grill over it. Strengthening the casings around your existing doors, otherwise a swift shove may break the casing or lock and allow the door to open. Remember that a side or back door, being less visible, may be subjected to a stronger attack than your front door.
Sliding windows and doors can be easily pried open. A simple length of broomstick or piece of wood cut to length and placed in the track will prevent the door or window from opening.
Outside Your Home
Good Visibility will discourage any potential burglar. Standard exterior lighting is important. Heavy landscaping may provide a welcome sign to an intruder. Make sure entrances and windows are not hidden from view by vegetation. Cut and prune vegetation away from these areas. Fences can be a useful cover to an intruder once he is on the other side and can use the fence for cover to secret his activity. Please keep in mind that an intruder will use your weak spots to their advantage. Use timers if you are going away on vacation. Ask your neighbor to visually check your home during the day and night and be on the lookout for any suspicious activity. Hardware stores offer economical security lighting devices. One is a sound sensitive light activating unit that activates lights upon detecting sound. It is adjustable for a wide range of sensitivity levels. The light will stay deactivated until it detects sounds. This can be very useful for outside lighting at an entry way or inside of a house when you are away. Lights can be set to activate for a knock at the door or a car door closing in the area. A second type of lighting is infra red that detects body heat. This type of lighting will activate lights should an intruder enter the perimeter violated.
Property marking is one of the oldest and best methods of crime prevention. If your possessions are stolen (or even lost and later recovered) your permanent I.D. number provides police officers with a verifiable proof of ownership. One of the most common methods is to inscribe your social security number on the bottom or side of an article. Your number can easily be traced even if your property is recovered in another county or state thanks to the law enforcement computer network in place.
An inscription tool costs $5-$10 at a hardware or department store. The Ashland Police Department is willing to assist in this area by allowing you to use their inscription tool. Please, Please, Please, keep a list of all your valuables in a safe place and record all serial numbers and model numbers of your valuables. If you are victimized this information will be entered in the National Crime Information Computer and anyone in possession of your property would be considered as receiving stolen property.
Your insurance company will also need detailed information on your articles of value along with proof of ownership. This means that you should keep all receipts and proof of purchases as best as possible with your serial numbers and model numbers. Taking pictures of your valuables is also a tool to show the police what size, condition and shape of your articles..
The best way to protect your property is to have an alarm in good working order. An alarm monitoring company for a nominal monthly fee can alert the police department if your home is violated. Depending on the system, they can alert the police to what part of your house has been violated. The alarm can be set while you sleep and while you are away. This offers a much more rapid response of the police department to your home and lessens the chances of an intruder taking your possessions. The alarm company can set the alarm up to be either silent or audible based on different factors.
False alarms are the only draw back. The town of Ashland allows three false alarms per household. This is to allow the owner and the alarm company to adjust the alarm properly. The owner can be assessed a $50 fee per false alarm should they persist. This is to motivate the owner to keep his system in good working order without burdening the police department with numerous false alarms. Our mission is to solve crimes committed against you. By paying attention to these crime tips you will be helping the Ashland Police Department in their efforts to solving the crime and punishing the perpetrators.
It can take months to repair the work of an identity thief. Here's where to start:
File a report with your local police department. "That gives you victim status," says Tracey Thomas of the Identity Theft Resource Center.
File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at 877-382-4357.
Get reports from the major credit bureaus, Equifax (888-766-0008), Experian (888-397-3742) and TransUnion (800-680-7289), and request a fraud alert on your credit file. If you find accounts that don't belong to you contact the creditor directly. Also contact all creditors who have made non-promotional inquiries into your credit file. Send all letters certified mail, return receipt requested.
Contact the fraud departments at the banks, credit-card companies and investment firms that you have accounts with. Ask them to require a PIN or password for all transactions or changes to your accounts. Do not use your mothers maiden name or the last four numbers of your social security number as your passwords.
You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from each credit bureau once a year.
If necessary, find referrals to lawyers who specialize in fair Credit Reporting Act issues thru the National Association of Consumer Advocates at www.naca.net/resource.htm.