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FPD offers safety tips for the holiday

By AARON KENNEDY - akennedy@ftimes.com

As we head farther into this season of giving, the Frankfort Police Department wishes to offer some safety tips to help residents protect themselves and their property during the holidays and beyond.

Frankfort Police Chief Troy Bacon warns that local law enforcement sometimes sees an increase in thefts and scams during the holidays.

“Some scams target the elderly,” Bacon said. “There also seems to be an increase in shoplifting in the larger stores.”

With so many purchasing so much in a predictable frame of time, the opportunity for theft is obviously increased, but Bacon says that much of it is preventable.

“Make sure you lock your property up and do not leave anything visible inside of your vehicle,” Bacon said. “I think if we could get everyone to lock their doors, we could cut theft in half. Most of the thefts we respond to are due to people just not locking their things up.”

Bacon said it is hard to predict what scams may be used this season, but most share some common traits.

“They change all the time and they have to because law enforcement catches it, and they have to change their technique,” he said. “They will play on your heartstrings and try to get your information out. Do not give any personal information that they can use to take your identity.

“There is another common scam we hear,” Bacon continued. “Someone will get a call from a (supposed) banking institution or insurance company. When they start engaging, they will ask for your personal information. Your bank and insurance company already has that information, so they will never ask you for it. If someone is asking you for that over the phone, it almost always is a scam.”

Bacon went on to mention that people get a lot of calls from police organizations and others like those during this time of year.

“The local Frankfort FOP (Fraternal Order of Police) does not solicit by phone,” he said. “If they get a solicitation phone call from the FOP, it is not legitimate.”

Bacon thanks all those who help the FPD make Frankfort a safer city.

“We have such a great staff whether it is civilian staff or sworn law enforcement that goes out every day and dedicates 100 percent of their time to making Frankfort better. All credit goes to them, but it is also the partnership we have in our community to solve crimes. Without that, we wouldn’t be able to have those good rankings. It definitely takes a partnership.”

The Frankfort Police Department’s list of holiday safety tips is as follows:

n When shopping, try to park in a well-lit area.

n Never leave valuables visible inside your vehicle. Place all items out of sight, inside your trunk.

n Remain aware of your surroundings when walking to and from your car.

n Never leave your car unoccupied with the motor running or with children inside, regardless of how close by you are.

n Whenever possible, shop during daylight hours. If you must shop at night, go with a friend or family member.

n Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.

n Criminals commonly take advantage of the generosity of people during the holiday season by soliciting donations. Be extra cautious before donating and thoroughly investigate the charity before giving any donation.

n If you are having packages delivered while you are at work or away, have a trusted neighbor or friend retrieve the packages for you soon after they are delivered.

n Be extra vigilant about locking doors and windows when you leave the house, even for a few minutes.

Report suspicious people or activities to law enforcement immediately. Call 911 for all emergencies or 654-4431 to report a non-emergency situation.