Many thieves target homes during the holidays due to the likelihood that the homeowner is out of town visiting with friends and family. In order to help residents keep their homes safe, St. Charles Parish Sheriff Greg Champagne offered a few simple precautions people can take before going out of town.
Champagne said it is important to make it appear that someone is home. To do this, he suggests having a trusted neighbor retrieve mail, newspapers and garbage cans every day that you are out of town.
Also, leave a couple of lights or the TV on.
“Timers for your lamps are relatively cheap and are an effective deterrent,” Champagne said.Residents should also make sure any holiday gifts are hidden from view if someone should happen to look through the window.
Since social media has become prevalent, Champagne said residents need to be careful about what they post about trips or vacations.
“Wait until you return to post photographs or talk about your trip,” he said. “Criminals also monitor these sites for information.”
For those who remain at home during the holidays but plan on going hunting, Champagne said guns and equipment should never be stored in the vehicle the night before because it makes it easier for thieves to make off with the items.
Lastly, Champagne said residents should ask a trusted neighbor to watch their homes and call 911 if they see anything suspicious.
“Just a few simple common sense precautions during this holiday season can prevent you becoming a victim,” Champagne said.