7 tips to prevent crime in your home, neighborhood

It is rare to watch the news and not see a story about crime.

Recently, I noticed a strange truck in my neighbor's driveway with two men bringing out furniture, televisions, etc. It got my attention and when I asked questions, I realized they were legitimate. A family member was actually moving out.

My neighbor thanked me for caring. We all need to be proactive when it comes to preventing crime. Here are some thoughts on how to protect yourself.

Look at your life “through the eyes of a criminal.” That means to see what your areas of weakness are. Fix them.

Never leave your garage door open. It allows criminals to see what's available.

Always lock your doors, even during the day, to prevent “walk-ins.”

Turn on a television or a talk radio program before leaving home. That might cause an “outsider” to believe the place is occupied and leave.

Get to know your neighbors – what they drive, their habits. That will enable you to more readily identify strangers in your community. ( A community watch group is an excellent idea.)

If you see someone who acts suspicious, call 911 and file a report. Get a description of the person and any vehicle he or she may drive. If possible take a photo to better help the police.

Take time to get prepared.