Residential Crime Prevention

It is a matter of common sense to lock our doors as we go to bed and whenever we leave our homes. Crime prevention is crucial for the safety of residents and it comes in various shapes and sizes. Crime prevention begins with taking measures to make sure that there is order both inside and outside your house (Winn paragraph 2). There are some basic measures of the residential crime prevention that should never be ignored by anyone. Some of these measures include having appropriately fitted doors in place, setting up an outside projector, keeping the yard free of mess, cutting shrubs and clearing branches from the window level this will ensure that no one hinds under the shrubs or branches. It is important for every resident to know what to do in the case of different circumstances. By doing this you will be protecting your life and property (Goodnow 81).      

Law enforcement officers cannot be everywhere. Citizens are required to keep watch and report any cases of crime. In many crime prone residential areas, neighborhood watches can play a crucial role in crime prevention. The residents willingness to report any criminal activity is key to crime prevention (Winn paragraph 4). They should be ready at any time of day or night to report anything they find wrong or suspicious. Neighborhood watch is a highly organized community policing program. In this program, there is one captain for every 10 to 15 houses, who acts as a link between the residents and the law enforcement officers. In the neighborhood watch meetings, it is important to have law enforcement officers present (Felson 75). 

Residents should always have a paper tablet and a pen at hand and call the police when they deem it is necessary. You should never be afraid of bothering the police, by calling them. Residents should always trust their instincts. As a resident you can keep a camera inside the house as a precaution to capture any criminal activity that could take place in your house. Residents should always keep their eyes open for suspicious vehicles in the neighborhood. Strangers moving from door to door are dangerous, and therefore, residents should always look out for such people. Strange people that peep through vehicles or those that are dropped off are always suspicious (Goodnow 18). 

It is important to have personal details of the people who offer services and deliveries to your house. It is important to get for photo identification from the service or delivery people before allowing them into the house. In case you are not sure about the person, you should not let himher into the house before calling the company to verify. Never get into the house if something seems to be wrong, for example, a broken window or an open door. If you suspect that someone has broken into the house, do not go near. You should first contact the police and ask help from the neighborhood watches if their services are available to your neighborhood. Criminals do not like to be surprised. They can commit rape, assault or murder in case they are surprised by anyone entering the house during their criminal activities (Felson 26).

Properly fitted doors and locks keep off criminals, especially, those who have limited time to break into the house. Most criminals spend no longer that one minute to try breaking into the house. Therefore, properly fitted doors and locks discourage them. There are some guidelines that should be followed for residential doors and locks as a significant prevention procedure it is important to install solid wood or metal doors it is proper to fit all exterior doors with chains install deadbolts on all outside entrances and secure sliding doors with proper locks or a stable anchor to follow in the door, you can install locks that are made specifically to avoid sliding or lifting (Goodnow 73). All the resistant rocks should meet local building and fire codes. Never hide your keys anywhere outside the house, but one can be given as a substitute to a trusted friend. Criminals know all the possible hiding places for keys. It is important to keep the yard, porch and all entrances well lit at night. You can look into motion detection lighting. You should always store tools, toys etc properly after use. Dangerous stools should not be left lying around (Winn paragraph 3). 

Alarm systems can help prevent crime. It is important to install the alarm system, especially, for the people who live in secluded, crime prone areas. If a burglar sees an alarm sign at the gate, he will always think twice before entering that house. You can use a guard dog or at least a Beware of Dog sign in a highly visible place outside the gate. Criminals do not like noise, dogs or witnesses. Even a small dog with a big bark will make a home less attractive to criminals (Winn paragraph 1).   

  If a person breaks into the house at night, you should leave safely, if it is possible, and then call the police. If it is not possible to leave, lock yourself in a room where there is a telephone and then call the police. If the burglar has already entered and there is no way you can escape, pretend you are asleep. Never act aggressively, because this can make himher act in defense, causing assault, rape or even murder. Guns could be seen as a safety precaution, but they are responsible for many accidental deaths at home. If you have to acquire one, it is important to think carefully, and if you possess one it is important to learn how to store and use it safely (Felson 46).

There is a need for neighbors to watch out for one another. Neighbors should cooperate to keep an eye on neighborhood homes.  It is important to have strong bonds in the neighborhood. Many criminals seek easy targets (Winn paragraph 5). If the neighborhood makes it difficult for them to operate, then they will lower their risks of becoming victims. It is important to know the neighbors. Know each others schedules so that in case something does not look normal, you can easily tell. Burglars will always attack when people are out at work. If your neighbor knows your schedule, he will know what time you return home from work and if you come back for lunch. If the house is occupied at the time you are supposed to be working, then the neighbor can raise an alarm (Felson 37). 

When you are making plans to travel, inform your trusted neighbor of your plans. It is important to have someone collect your newspapers, mails and other deliveries while away. A home that looks preoccupied, has newspapers piling up on the lawn, mailbox overflowing, and lights always off, will be so appealing to criminals. Never share plans to travel with a stranger. You should leave your blinds and shades in their normal position to give the impression that someone is in the house (Goodnow 36). You can use timing devices on lighting and for extended absences, it is important to hire a trusted house-sitter. The garage door should always be locked. This prevents items from being stolen and also takes away the sign that you are home or away. If this is where you keep your vehicle, burglars will not know when you are home or away. It is important to watch out how you dispose off the trash. It is dangerous to dispose the box for an expensive television or computer on the thrash bin to wait for collecting. You can cut off the box into pieces and put into a disposal bag or have the store dispose them for you. It is important to have a safe deposit box for jewels and other valuables (Felson 45).

Nowadays, the rate of criminal activities has increased and become more sophisticated. It is important to properly evaluate your needs for a home before settling for any neighborhood. Where the home is located and the surrounding environment determines the level of crime prevention required. Effective security measures do not have to be so costly. Common sense and a bit of prevention measures can go along way in maintaining security.


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