SHERIFF GARRISON OFFERS HOLIDAY SAFETY TIPS

SHERIFF GARRISON OFFERS HOLIDAY SAFETY TIPS

Doña Ana County Sheriff Todd Garrison is asking all Doña Ana County residents to take extra precautions to avoid holiday-season robberies and burglaries.

“It’s an unfortunate fact that predators come out to take advantage of our citizens during peak shopping times,” Garrison said. “Burglars also are busy casing houses where gifts and other valuables may be waiting inside. There are a few simple precautions you can take to minimize your risk.”

* Be aware of your surroundings and scan the area from time to time.

* Avoid concentrating so hard on shopping that you fail to keep track of your surroundings, others near you or your personal effects. Never leave a purse or wallet in a place where it can be snatched away while you’re not looking.

* Wear conservative, comfortable clothing that lets you move easily.

* Grip carried items firmly and avoid leaving them unattended, especially after you have paid for them.

* Shop with friends or relatives whenever possible. There is safety in numbers.

* Carry minimal cash and valuables, and wear minimal jewelry.

* If possible, leave your children with a trusted baby sitter while shopping; children can distract you, and predators know this.

* Use debit or credit cards, which are generally much safer than carrying a lot of cash.

* Promptly report suspicious persons, vehicles and crimes to the nearest local law-enforcement agency.

* When leaving your home, make sure that lights are on and the residence appears to be occupied. Have a neighbor assist you with picking up packages, mail and newspapers that have been delivered each day. If possible, have a neighbor park a vehicle in your driveway.

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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (505) 525-5801.