General Crime Safety Tips

Posted on May 13, 2019

As summertime approaches, which means summer vacations, open doors and windows for the warmer weather, and more people outdoors, following are some general crime tips to help keep you and your property safe.

If you’re traveling: 

– Get an automatic timer for your lights.

– Ask a trusted neighbor to watch your home while you are gone.

– Arrange vacation checks with the police department.

– Have the mail and newspaper delivery stopped or arrange for a friend or trusted neighbor to pick them up daily.

– Arrange for your lawn to be moved if you are going to be away for an extended period.

If you’re out for the evening: 

– Turn on lights and a radio/tv so it looks like someone is home.

– Always lock doors and windows when you leave, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

If you’re shopping: 

– Stay alert and be aware of what’s going on around you.

– Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Pay by check or debit/credit card whenever possible.

– Park in a well-lit space and be sure to lock the car, close the windows, and hide shopping bags and gifts in the trunk.

– Carry purchases with you while you shop, but don’t overburden yourself with packages. If you must take them to your car, stow them in your truck and move your vehicle to another location in case thieves are watching.

– Deter pickpockets and purse-snatchers. Be extra careful with purses and wallets. Carry a purse close to your body, not dangling by the straps. Put a wallet in an inside coat or front pants pocket.

– If you’re shopping with kids, teach them to go to a store clerk or security guard in case you are separated.

Protect your deliveries: 

– Require a signature for deliveries so they aren’t left when nobody is home.

– Consider having packages delivered to your place of business instead of home.

– Set up alternative delivery/pickup options if the delivery service offers them.

Protect your vehicle: 

– Always close the windows and lock your doors. Use anti-theft devices if you have them.

– Never leave your vehicle running while you run inside your home or a store, even if it’s only for minute.

– Store all items out of sight. Anything left in plain view may tempt a thief. Thieves break into cars for anything they think may have value. They can’t tell if it’s sweaty gym clothes or something valuable inside the duffle bag on the back seat.

– Remove documents containing personal information, garage door openers, car keys and other items that can make you vulnerable to other crimes.

If a stranger comes to the door: 

– Criminals will sometimes pose as couriers delivering gifts, so be cautious when accepting a package.

– It’s not uncommon for people to try to take advantage of other’s generosity by going door-to-door for charitable donations when there is no charity involved. Ask for identification and how the funds will be used. If you’re not satisfied, don’t give.

If you see something, say something:

– Pay attention to your surroundings.

– Call 9-1-1 as soon as you see any suspicious activity.

– Keep an eye out for suspicious vehicles and subjects in your neighborhood.

– If you see suspicious vehicles, try to write down or remember the license plate.

– If you see any suspicious people, try to write down or remember their description and their direction of travel.

– If you observe someone looking into vehicles and/or checking car handles, immediately report the activity to police.

– Call 9-1-1 for immediate threats to life or property and other crimes in progress. If it’s not an immediate threat, you can call the non-emergency phone number (650) 997-8321.

Be a good neighbor:

– Join your local Neighborhood Watch Group

– Get to know your neighbors

– Join NextDoor (

Don’t report crime via Social Media:

– Our social media pages are not monitored 24/7 and most social media platforms prevent us from viewing what you post unless it’s a direct response to us.

– To best serve you, please call 9-1-1 for emergencies or our non-emergency dispatch line, (650) 997-8321, for non-emergencies so that we can dispatch an officer to assist.

– Remember, if you can’t call because you are in a dangerous situation, you can now text 9-1-1.

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