Evanston police are urging residents to not let time away for the holidays turn into an opportunity for burglars.

Cmdr. Ryan Glew says preventing a burglary is easier than you might think. A significant portion of burglaries in Evanston involve residences that were unsecured in some way such as unlocked doors and windows. The department advises using what’s called the C.L.E.A.R. method of risk reduction.

C – Call the Police if you observe suspicious activity.
L – Lock your doors and windows.
E – Encourage your neighbors to be vigilant. 
A – Avoid having valuables visible for potential burglars.
R – Record the serial numbers of your bicycles and electronics.

There are additional steps you may want to consider to make the C.L.E.A.R. method more effective.

  • Store cash and valuables in a safety deposit box or safe if you have one.
  • Set a timer on your home lights to give the appearance your residence is occupied.
  • Coordinate with neighbors, friends or family to check on your residence while you are away.
  • Remove window air conditioning units and lock those windows, especially on the first floor.

The C.L.E.A.R. method of risk reduction doesn’t only applies to residences, it also applies to your vehicles. Residents should not leave vehicles running with the keys in the ignition due to cold weather.

The Holiday Season means online shopping and package deliveries. The extra package deliveries means an increase in package thefts. Protect your holiday packages by following these prevention measures.

  • Consider having your packages delivered to a P.O. Box or mailbox location.
  • Make sure you have a tracking number for your deliveries so you can get a text or email when your package is delivered.
  • When feasible require a signature for delivery. 
  • Make sure common doors in apartment and condo building are closed and secured.

And, Glew says, the tips are good advice 365 days a year, so try to make them part of your normal routine.

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