Some not so obvious things to watch for
Not every stranger who comes into your neighborhood is a criminal by any means. There are many perfectly legitimate door-to-door salesmen, repairmen, and servicemen moving around our neighborhood all the time. But criminals do take advantage of this by taking the guise of legitimate business representatives. After all, if a criminal looked like a criminal, no one would have any trouble spotting him. But, if you see:
ÃÂ· Someone going door to door in your neighborhood, watch for a while. If, after a few houses are visited, one or more of the persons tries a door to see if it is locked or goes into a back or side yard, it could be a burglar. Such action is even more suspicious, if one person remains in the front when this occurs, or if there is a car following, a few houses away. Call the police immediately; do not wait for the person to leave.
ÃÂ· Someone is waiting in front of a house or business if the owners are absent or... if it's a business... and the business is closed. This might be a lookout for a burglary in progress inside.
ÃÂ· Anyone forcing entrance to or tampering with a residence, business or vehicle.
ÃÂ· A person running, especially if carrying something of value.
ÃÂ· Someone carrying property, if it's at an unusual hour or in an unusual place, or if the property is not wrapped as if just purchased.
ÃÂ· A person exhibiting unusual mental or physical symptoms may be injured, under the influence of drugs or otherwise needing medical or psychiatric assistance.
ÃÂ· Many people going to and from a certain residence is not suspicious, unless it occurs on a daily or very regular basis, especially during late or unusual hours. It could possibly be the scene of drugs and vice activities or a "fence" operation.
Source: National Crime Prevention Council