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In the interest of public service, the Apache Junction Police Department continuously strives to make our community as safe as possible. In order for our mission to be successful, we need continuous help from the public. The most successful way to avoid becoming the victim of a crime is to practice common sense deterrence methods that are effective. As our winter families prepare to leave for the spring and summer, we would like to remind everyone of those deterrence methods.
Avoid doing these:
Covering the windows with roller shades, plywood, aluminum covering or Styrofoam
Stringing chains or ropes across the driveway
Covering or removing tires; putting the vehicle up on jacks
Covering vehicle with a tarp
No lights left on, inside or out
Every burglar works differently, but they do have common goals:
1. They want to work quickly
2. They want to work quietly
3. They like to stay anonymously
The goal for year-round and winter visitors should be making their home look occupied all year long.
Proper lighting prevents the burglars from working anonymously and gives the resident more options for security
Patio or porch areas well lit
Installing outside “dusk to dawn” lights in the front of the property
Motion lights in the back of the property set to detect movement at doors & windows
Adapters can be added to a light socket to convert any light bulb into a “dusk to dawn” light, including motion lights
Solar lights can be used outside, independent of your breaker box and takes no electricity
Make sure to secure the breaker box if leaving the electricity on
Alarms, monitored or unmonitored, may need electricity or an open telephone line and must have an alarm permit filed through the police department
Trimming shrubs and bushes to the lower edge of the window, no higher than 36 inches with a clear view of the window
Trimming tree limbs up to seven feet or higher
Keeping walkways and sidewalks free from plant growth
Planting “aggressive” plants such as bougainvillea or thorny cactus beneath windows or along fences and walls
Keeping the wall or fence line free from anything such as blocks, wood, chairs, etc., that could be used as a “step”
Locking ladders and tools inside a shed or garage
Having your yard maintained while gone
Manually lock your garage door from the inside and disengage your electronic device
Lock attic access
Do not leave personal paperwork or valuables (lock if them if they must be left behind)
The strike plates on all exterior doors should be anchored with screws 2 to 3 inches long
All exterior doors should be equipped with a good quality deadbolt lock
A solid, case-hardened steel cylinder guard; a rotating cylinder guard is even better
A bolt that protrudes at least 1 inch
Case-hardened fasteners to hold both pieces of the lock securely to the door
Crank: Drill a small hole through the latch frame and the latch handle. A metal pin or small padlock can be inserted, locking the latch closed
Double Hung: drill a set of small holes into the top of the lower window through the inside frame into the outside frame; do not go through the outside frame. The holes should be drilled at a slight downward angle and a nail or pin should be inserted to be most effective
Sliding (doors and windows): To prevent the window from sliding and lifting, a pin lock can be installed, which holds the sliding portions together, not allowing it to move in any direction.
Appearances at home:
Leave your drapes in the normal position; have a neighbor open & close them or use sheers
Never leave a spare key in a convenient hiding place
Turn home phone on low
Ask a neighbor to put a bag of garbage out for you on garbage day
Have a neighbor turn your TV or radio on periodically or have it on a timer
Leaving a Vehicle:
Do not leave keys to the vehicle in the house
If there is an alarm — Use it! Avoid using an alarm that has an override feature
Use an anti-theft device such as The Club, kill switch, etc.
Use “self-locking” bolts on your license plates to prevent theft of the plate
Remove all documents and any portable devices
Do not cover the vehicle, cover the tires, remove the tires or place it on jacks
Have a neighbor or caretaker blow off the leaves and dirt every couple of weeks, or drive the vehicle
If the vehicle is registered in Arizona, join the Watch Your Car Program
1. Mark your valuables with your driver’s license number, state and expiration date, so that your property can be easily traced and identified.
2. Make and maintain an inventory list of your valuable property, including items with serial numbers. Photograph items that cannot be engraved.
3. Display a sign that your property has been marked.
While these methods may not be 100 percent effective, they certainly provide an additional level of security. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us for additional information.