The Calgary Police Service is encouraging Calgarians to establish a 9 p.m. Routine to help them secure their property before heading to bed. Over the summer months, residential break and enters increase by 20 per cent.
Property crime, including break and enters, car prowlings and auto thefts, continues to affect citizens across the city. In many cases, simply locking up and taking the opportunity away from offenders is enough to stop the crime. So far this year, offenders have only needed to force entry in 34 per cent of residential break and enters. As well, 50 per cent of all residential break and enters occurred overnight, creating a significant safety concern for residents and their families who could be home sleeping.
The 9 p.m. Routine is a campaign that began in Pasco County, Florida and is now used by police agencies across North America to remind citizens to protect themselves and their property. The CPS is joining in on the routine and encourages Calgarians to do the same.
“The routine is simple,” says Sgt. Matt Baker of the CPS Centralized Break and Enter Teams. “Every night before going to bed we want all citizens to get in the habit of double checking that their vehicles, property and residence are secure. Offenders will often go down a street checking vehicles and houses for doors left open. By simply locking your door you could avoid waking up to an intruder in your home.”
The routine recommends:
- Removing valuables from vehicles.
- Ensuring vehicles are locked, windows are closed and if possible, parked in a garage.
- Closing garage doors and windows.
- Locking any person-doors in the garage, including those leading into a house.
- Checking that all house doors – front, back, side and garage – are locked.
- Ensuring all windows are shut.
- Turning on an exterior light.
Since January, $7.4 million worth of property has been stolen from citizens via residential break and enters. From January to May 2018, there were 1,678 break and enters, 4,149 car prowlings and 2,592 stolen vehicles in Calgary.