JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - Officers with the Jackson Police Department are handing out tips instead of tickets in an effort to head off thieves.
During a ride along, it took only a few minutes for Sergeant Jon Jensen to spot an opportunity for thieves to easily take off with someone's stuff.
They're calling it, 'Crimes of Opportunity,' and this summer police say they're being more proactive to keep the crime rates down.
The handful of notices Captain Rodney Barnes collects each month show what officers and possible thieves see, but others might miss.
"Here's an open garage door, unsecured valuables in plain view of the vehicle, unsecured door," said Captain Barnes.
The Jackson Police Department is working to prevent crime by reminding people it doesn't take much for a theft to occur.
"It can happen that quickly in the middle of the day, so we are always trying to look for things that aren't right," said Sergeant Jensen.
It might seem easy to remember. but sure enough during a ride along with Sergeant Jensen an open garage with someone's valuables there for the taking.
"There is two nice fishing poles right there on the side of the wall. It would take as much time to put it in park walk up grab them and walk off," he said.
Sergeant Jensen left a reminder for this person to close his garage door.
He also noticed a lot of lawn equipment sitting out in the open, but he said vehicle break-ins are most common. People think it is safe enough to leave their cars unlocked and their valuables out in the open.
"It's when I am taking reports from people that their vehicle has been broken into where they would say, 'I thought since we were in Jackson, I could do that,'" he said.
Jackson Police say it's important to protect your home and belongings by taking action before thefts happen. They recommend:
- Keep your things locked away in a garage or shed
- Consider installing video surveillance systems
- Talk to your neighbors about any problems
- Report thefts immediately
There's nothing required by you if you do get one of these notices on your door, again, just a reminder. Sergeant Jensen said summer time is when most of these crimes take place, so he hopes people take them seriously.