If you are leaving town:
If you suspect anything out of the ordinary, see suspicious people or see suspicious activity in the neighborhood: call the VBPD non
emergency number, 385-5000. Give them a description of the person or persons and describe why you feel they are acting suspicious. If you see an actual crime being committed or about to be committed, call VBPD at 911 immediately.
Some of us may be hesitant to report suspicious people or vehicles fearing that we will be regarded as “snoops”. Your own neighbors are your single best security device. The greatest deterrent to a would-be criminal is the fear of getting caught. Each concerned citizen is another pair of eyes to let the criminal know that he is being watched. You are a vital part of Neighborhood Watch. One or two people cannot watch 907 homes. It takes all of us to do our part. Thank you for doing your part it’s paying off.
From the "Lake Smith Ripples" March newsletter:
Crime in our neighborhoods of Lake Smith Terrace, Haygood Point and Governor Square has been practically unheard of so far this winter, but the nearby neighborhood of Lake View Shores had a recent home break in on Braddock Avenue. It appears that it occurred between, February 21 – 23. The rear exterior door was heavily damaged to gain entry and the house was ransacked and both large and small items were stolen. This location is just a few blocks from Lake Smith Terrace. The police are investigating.
Not all homes are broken into at night. Make your home look like someone is there during the day also. It’s a good idea to leave exterior lights on at night but if they are on all day it will appear that no one is home. Turn the exterior lights off as you leave for work or put the lights on a timer if you will be away for any length of time. If you will be going out of town for an extended period alert a trusted neighbor to keep an eye on your home while you are gone.
With the arrival of warmer weather and longer hours of daylight, more people will be out and about (and not always with the best intentions). Please stay alert and aware of your surroundings. Be sure to remove all valuables and especially guns when exiting your vehicle, and lock it up. When the people that are roaming through neighborhoods flipping vehicle door handles hoping to find one that’s unlocked; when they find one with a hand gun it’s like they won the Lottery. These are the last people that we want to be in possession of a firearm. How would you feel if a deadly crime was traced back to your gun that was stolen from your unlocked vehicle?
Don’t leave out bicycles, yard equipment, or other items that thieves may be tempted to take from your yard or driveway. Your home is your castle and it's important that you and your family feel safe there. Being aware of your surroundings and paying attention to what happens in your neighborhood is an important part of your safety. The police cannot monitor our homes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but your neighbors can help watch yours and you can keep watch on theirs.
While it has never been said that criminals play fair, it is even harder to accept when they target those that are especially vulnerable - our senior citizens. REMEMBER: If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is! Always do your homework first. Never give out your personal information in response to a call or email, and NEVER allow someone into your home without carefully verifying their identity. Don’t rush into a “deal”. Talk it over with a trusted family member or friend before committing to any unsolicited business deal.
We know what is normal for our community. If you see anything or anybody that looks suspicious call the police. Our police force is working for us and it’s their job to investigate suspicious activity. An investigation rarely results in an arrest, but sometimes it does and could result in getting a dangerous criminal off of our streets! Call the VBPD non-emergency number at 385- 5000 if you see something or someone suspicious, trust your instincts. Call 911 immediately if you see an actual crime being committed.
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Last updated - March 29, 2023