Contact Info: firstname.lastname@example.org
The new Monroe Police Department Business Watch Program will link the business community and the police department. Business Watch is businesses (sometimes with community groups), taking systematic steps to reduce opportunities for crimes in and around their businesses.
It includes training business personnel to be eyes and ears for the police. In Business Watch areas, crime prevention police officers and business leaders assist business owners, operators, and employees in reporting crime. Business Watch Members are trained to effectively observe and report to police all incidents and suspicious activities that could lead to crime.
Business Watch members are encouraged to mark all equipment, machines, etc., with traceable identification numbers for deterrence and easier tracing. Business Watch Members will have access to Police Instructors who will give tips and instructions on robbery prevention, eliminating “easy prey” crime opportunities and burglary prevention.
Business Watch Members will learn specific crime reduction techniques, such as adding security measures to impede criminals and criminal activity. They will also learn how to detect criminal activity, and how to communicate with the police in a manner where it would increase the probability of catching the suspect should a crime occur. They will also learn to recognize dangerous situations, and learn how to prevent, avoid, or flee them.
City of Monroe Business owners showing an interest in developing a Business Watch program will be invited to a meeting and will be encouraged to invite neighboring businesses to the informal meeting. To put it simple, discouraging crime through education and communication is the goal. Motivated toward that objective, business owners and the Monroe Police Business Watch Coordinator will attempt to recruit as many other businesses as possible. Strength in numbers will achieve the goal of success for the program.
How Business Watch Works
The Business Watch Program educates the participants in the principles of deterring and detecting crime. It serves to advance communication among businesses and the Monroe Police Department. The program depends on a strong network of businesses organized by the membership with the help of the Monroe Police Department.
Business watch members are not asked to participate in activities where personal injury may occur nor are they expected to act independently to fight crime. Organization and education are the Business Watch strengths, and Communication is its most powerful tool.
The Business Watch Program helps business owners and their employees fight crime in the community where they work. It promotes a safe business environment and educates owners in making their business more secure. Business Watch members are trained to spot suspicious activities and are encouraged to call the police before a problem occurs. Business Watch members also form a support group where problems and suspicious events are discussed, and new ideas for business safety are presented. The Business Watch Program grows stronger as more businesses join.
Commercial or Business Burglaries
In 2008, the Monroe Police Department recorded 1,222 burglaries and 1,398 in 2009. Few Burglars are ever caught, and according to national statistics, approximately 70 percent of all burglars are never caught. Most burglars are initially arrested for other unrelated crimes, and then later charged with burglary. Therefore, prevention is the key to decreasing the possibility of becoming a victim of burglary. The following are a few tips we believe would assist citizens become crime free.
- Keep your property exterior clean, neat and well maintained. This communicates a feeling of care and as a deterrent to vandals and burglars.
- Control access to the roof of the business.
- Add or improve lighting such as motion lights and spotlights around the building to illuminate obscured areas and promote natural visibility and surveillance.
- Boost security by installing cameras, security alarm system etc.
- See and be seen. A person is less likely to commit a crime if the think they have been seen.
- Eliminate the broken window theory: the broken window theory suggests that one broken window or one nuisance if allowed to exist, will lead to others and ultimately to the decline of an entire community. Neglected and poorly maintained properties are breeding grounds for criminal activity.
- Always have two have two employees open and close the business.
- Keep a minimum of cash on the premises. Leave cash registers empty and open after hours.
- Move valuable merchandise and business equipment away from windows or doors to prevent smash and grabs.
- Arrange window displays so that passerby and police can see into the store.
- Always leave an interior light on that is visible from the street. If for any reason, an all of a sudden dark store will arouse suspicion.
- Inspect the entire business before you lock the doors, this will prevent locking a burglar in the business.
Auto-burglary prevention, like all crime prevention, involves limiting the criminal’s ability and/or opportunity to commit the crime. With very little time and effort, citizens can make a huge difference in your vulnerability to auto-burglary. It generally takes a mere few seconds to secure your valuables, but it will take only a few seconds more for a thief to break in and steal valuables left in plain sight. The following are a few tips we believe would assist businesses and reduce the likelihood of being a victim of Vehicle Burglary.
- Do not leave valuables in your car – particularly not in plain sight! The last thing you need is to find your vehicle’s window broken or items missing.
- Do not leave valuables in your car. That sounds like “common sense”, but drivers/passengers do leave items of value in plain view every day. If you leave valuable items visible in your car, your car is automatically a target.
- One reason SUVs and pickups are common auto-burglary targets is because they don’t have a “trunk” to hold valuables – the driver/passenger generally just “hides” their valuables “out of sight”. The thieves know this, and do check glove compartments, behind seats, and under seats. It only takes a few seconds to check all the “usual” hiding places.
- Do not store valuables in your car any longer than necessary, and certainly never overnight. Once you arrive home, unload your valuables immediately.
- Leave no trace. Don’t leave any “sign” that there might be valuables “out of sight” in your vehicle, such as docking stations or connector cables. Leave nothing in “plain sight” that might make your vehicle worth “investigating” by a thief, that includes loose coins or a CD. If you have an after-market stereo/CD-player with a removable faceplate, remove it. Without the faceplate, the unit is less attractive/useful to many thieves, and harder to “fence”. If the unit can be pulled, pull it! Take it with you. Just covering a valuable radio (or ANY valuables in your car) with something (like a blanket or towel) to hide it will probably only draw thieves’ attention.
- Lock ALL your vehicle’s doors even if you plan to be gone for only a brief time. Every year, we have items stolen from unlocked vehicles where the owner was only going to be gone “just for a second“. It only takes seconds to steal your stuff! It is not uncommon for thieves to walk down a row of parked vehicles and check vehicle doors to see if they are unlocked. Don’t leave any window open or even cracked open, including vent/wing windows and sunroofs.
Items Commonly Stolen From Vehicles
Backpacks, gym bags, briefcases, day-planners cash/coins, checkbooks and credit/debit cards, wallets and purses (even when hidden under a seat or in an unlocked glove compartment) Laptop computers, iPods and MP3 players, (and docking stations) Cell phones (and chargers) portable GPS navigation systems Stereo/CD players (and faceplates), amps, speakers (even when bolted down!) jewelry, keys, mail (identity theft) and tools
The majority of robberies involve either the threat or the use of a weapon, making this crime against businesses the most dangerous to employees and customers. Therefore, it is imperative that businesses take measures to prevent or reduce the likelihood of becoming a target for a robbery. The following are a few tips we believe would assist businesses and reduce the likelihood of being a victim of a robbery.
- Maintain well-lighted areas that enable employees to keep an eye out for suspicious-looking persons. It also increase the possibility – in the event of a robbery- that someone outside will be able to see the robbery occurring.
- Avoid hanging large signs or posters on the front doors and windows. If you do place signs on the windows it should be to a minimal.
- Keep a minimum amount of cash on the premises. Leave cash registers empty and open after hours. Post a sign saying that all registers have less than fifty dollars in them.
- Place measuring tape or colored tape markers at the main entrance to help employees gauge the height of a robber as he leaves the business. Using different colors, place the strips at 5′, 5’6″, and 6″ heights.
- Install a silent alarm system
- Make sure all secondary doors are locked and / or secured, this prevents a robber from entering undetected.
- Vary your banking routine. Deposit money as often as practical. Vary your routine so it cannot be determined by anyone casing the business.
In The Event Of A Robbery
- Remain Calm
- Obey instructions of the robber
- Picture the suspect, safeguard life and evidence.
- The average robbery takes less than two minutes. Once the robbery begins, your main objective is to end it as quickly and safely as possible. Remember the longer it takes the more nervous the robbers will become
- NEVER RESIST A ROBBER! Nothing is worth serious injury or death.
- Finally, if you are the victim of a crime… call the police, exit the business and do not touch anything.
Crime Prevention And Safety Tips:
- Have employees use the main entrance to avoid the chance that a back door will be left unlocked.
- Post crime reporting telephone numbers and emergency numbers beside every telephone in the business.
- Train each employee to be aware of unusual behavior, inside the business, this may include customers who seem to be loitering or appear to be shopping. Employees should be aware of customers wearing clothing that is out of season, such as a person who is wearing a large coat in the summer may pose a risk.
- Have employees greet customers as they enter the business and ask if they need help. Criminals hate to be noticed or have personal interactions.
- Know your neighboring business owners and managers. Remember, there is safety in numbers.
How To Become A Member
To become a member of the Monroe Police Departments Business Watch Program simply complete the membership form [link pending] or print it and mail it to Monroe Police Department Business Watch at 1810 Martin Luther King Blvd #B, Monroe LA 71201.
Businesses helping Businesses!
Police helping Businesses!
Businesses helping Police!