FOCUS: Lock It or Lose It

We would like to give you a few tips to help reduce the possibility of you becoming a victim of crimes of opportunity.

These steps will also help reduce crime in your neighborhood.

  • ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings
  • ALWAYS secure your garage door
  • ALWAYS lock your vehicle
  • DO NOT leave valuables or firearms in vehicles
  • Verify ALL outside lighting is functional
  • Report ANY and ALL suspicious activity
  • Non-emergency (520)682-4032
  • TAKE Your keys
  • REMOVE Your valuables
  • LOCK Your vehicle

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FOCUS: Scams

Nothing is FREE!

If it seems too good to be true... it probably is.

There are many scams going around, and we want you to be on the alert so you don’t become a victim. The best defense is awareness.

Some of the current scams involve:

Grandson Scam

Someone calls in the middle of the night claiming to be your child or grandchild and asks you to wire money because they are ill, have been arrested, or have car trouble. Hang up and call the phone number you know for them or another relative to confirm they are okay. DO NOT send money. This is a SCAM!

Alarm Systems

Do not let anyone into your home to ‘check’ your system unless you called them. Check with your local Better Business Bureau to assure you have chosen a reputable company. Do not tell someone who comes to your door if you do or do not have an alarm. Don’t let someone put a sign in your yard unless you have purchased an alarm from the company that gives you the sign.

Lottery or Contest Winner

You do not have to “pay” to receive winnings from a legitimate contest if you entered one. Never accept a check that you are asked to deposit and then return part of the money to the sender. Usually you did not even enter this contest or lottery. These are a SCAM!

Pest Control

The Town of Marana does not offer this service!

Water System Check-Up

The Town of Marana will not ask to come into your home to ‘check’ your water or it’s quality.

Bank Account Text Messages

Do not call the number back if they text you that they have a problem with your account. Instead, call your bank using the number on the back of your debit or credit card or at the bottom of one of your personal checks or statement and tell them that you have received a text message like this.

Distraction Tactics

  1.  A woman with a child knocks on your door and asks to use the bathroom. The woman then steals medication out of your medicine cabinet or other valuables that are out in the open. Instead of letting them in, offer to call the police for them if they truly need assistance or services.
  2. Someone knocks on your door and asks you to come outside so they can ‘check your water’ or other issues. Once you go out and follow them to the back, their partner, who you have not yet seen, runs in the front door and burglarizes your home. Instead of going out, tell them that you will need to call & verify first. Close and lock your door, then call (520) 382-2570 to verify. If they quickly leave, call Marana Police at 911 to report this and give a good description of the person and their vehicle.

Rules of Thumb for Your Safety:

Do not give anyone personal information unless you made the initial contact.

Do not let anyone you don’t know into your home for any reason. If you called them, ask for picture ID. Do not answer questions about your home or schedule from someone at your door.

If a stranger knocks on your door, simply yell out, “We are busy, please go away!”

Do not let anyone pressure you into making a decision “today, because the offer is ending”.

Do not give solicitors any money, checks, etc. to “hold” or to “order materials”.

Keep a cordless phone or cell phone with you when you are in your yard.

Look for the vehicle they are driving, license plate, and any identifying marks or signage for description. Be Alert and Aware when out shopping - be sure no one follows you home.

Keep your doors locked, especially if you are on the other side of the house or in the yard or garage.

Additional current scams involve:

Medicare Card Update

Someone calls stating they are from Social Security and tells you that due to the new Obamacare Medical program, they need to send you a new Medicaid/Medicare Card. They ask you to verify your name, address, and telephone number. Do Not give out this personal information over the phone to anyone who calls you. The next question they ask you is, “Which bank do you have your Social Security check deposited to?” Never give anyone this type of information! This is a SCAM!

Utility Fee Rebate

Someone calls and tells you they have rebates available to give money back to the residents of Marana due to an overcharge on their utility (water) bills. There is NO available rebate for charges on utility (water) bills. Do not give them any information regarding your name or address. This is a SCAM!

Door-to-Door Salespeople

In Marana, it is required that all Door-to-Door Salespeople and Solicitors have a current Solicitors License with them when knocking on doors. They cannot say, “It’s in my car” or “It’s back at my office”, they must have it in their possession at all times. It is best not to engage in any type of conversation with them and NEVER let them into your home. These are often SCAM’s and it is difficult to know if they have a legitimate business or not. Therefore, it’s best to say you are not interested and close the door. Remember, never give out personal information either.

Panhandlers

Panhandlers will often approach people when they are walking through parking lots of businesses and ask for money. Panhandling is illegal in Marana. Occasionally, a person looking to do a robbery will pretend to be a panhandler and when the person opens their purse or wallet, they will grab ALL of the money and run away. If someone approaches you and asks for money, just tell them you do not have anything, but will be happy to call the Police to get them some assistance! Mesa Police have many resources to assist the needy.

Medical Lab Home Visits

If someone comes to your door unexpectedly and states that your doctor, or their lab, has ordered an emergency test for you and they are there to collect blood or urine samples, Do Not let them in your home. Do Not give them any personal information including your name or doctor’s name. Close and lock the door and call your doctor’s office to verify and notify them that this has occurred. If the doctor’s office confirms that they did not send anyone, call the Marana Police at (520)-682-4032 and report this suspicious activity. This is a SCAM that is used to get into your home so they can burglarize it (medicine, jewelry, cash) while you are in the bathroom.

Rules of Thumb for Your Safety:

The Social Security Administration does not call you to verify information: They will communicate with you by mail only, unless you contact them by telephone.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) does not call you to verify information: They will communicate with you by mail only, unless you contact them by telephone.

Banks do not call you to verify information—They will communicate with you by mail only, unless you contact them by telephone or sign up at your bank to receive text messages or e-mail alerts about your account. When in doubt, call your bank using the phone number listed on the back of your ATM or credit card, personal check, or bank statement, never use an unknown number given to you by an unverified person who has called you.

Doctor offices will always notify you directly if they need you to get any lab work done. They will not randomly send someone to your home unannounced. If you need to have the lab come to your home, you will schedule that yourself or through your Dr.’s office. Be sure to mark the date and time on your calendar. Always request a Photo I.D. from the person when they arrive at your home to confirm they are the one you scheduled.

MARANA POLICE DEPARTMENT NON-EMERGENCY NUMBER: (520) 682-4032

FOCUS: Suspicious Activity

What numbers do I call?

  • 9-1-1           Life-threatening / In Progress Incidents
  • 682-4032     NOT life-threatening / NOT In Progress
  • 382-2000     For general information

What do I need to tell them when I call?

Don’t Just call. Call with information:

  • What happened?
  • When did it happen?
  • Where did it happen?
  • Who did it?

Suspect description

  • Race
  • Sex
  • Clothing
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Hair Color

Other identifying marks/traits

Vehicle description

  • Color
  • Make
  • Model
  • Year
  • License plate number

Do I have to give my name, address or phone number?

No, but it is helpful to have that information in case we need to contact you for additional information.

Will the officer stop and talk to me?

Not unless you specifically request it. If you want to talk to the officer, tell the dispatcher when you call in. Or you can have the officer call you on the phone after the officer has handled the situation.

    Suspicious activity concerning persons

    Activity – Possible Crime

    • Going door to door in a residential neighborhood – Possible “Door Knocker” burglary suspect
    • Waiting or loitering in front of closed businesses or unoccupied houses or apartments - Possible burglary suspect or tresspassers
    • Forcing entrance into an occupied home - Possible burglary or theft suspects
    • Persons carrying property, especially if running or at an unusual hour – Possible suspect fleeing from the scene of a crime
    • Screaming or loud voices – Possible rape, assault or domestic violence situation
    • Loitering near schools/parks – Possible sex offender
    • Items or services for sale at very low prices – Possible stolen property of fraudulent scheme
    • Heavy traffic to and from a specific residence on a regular basis – Possible drug house or stolen property operation
    • Continuous repair operations at a non-business location – Possible stolen property being altered.
    • Forcing entry into a locked vehicle, especially in a parking lot – Possible theft of car or its contents
    • Person acting unusual – Possibly ill on drugs, or medical condition

    Suspicious activity concerning vehicles

    Activity-Possible Crime

    • Driving slowly and aimlessly throughout a residential neighborhood or apartment complex - Possible burglary suspect or sex offender
    • Parked, occupied vehicles, especially at an unusual hour - Possible burglary suspect or sex offender
    • Vehicles driving at night without lights on - Possible burglary suspect or impaired driver

     

    FOCUS: Reporting Beer Theft

    When a person has been the victim of a beer theft, time is of the essence for Police trying to apprehend a suspect.

    Your employees should contact Police as soon as possible in an effort to provide the following information:

    SUSPECT:

    • Gender
    • Race
    • Physical description
    • Vehicle make, model, color, year, plate number, description, direction of travel
    • Number of occupants in the vehicle

    WHO’S STEALING YOUR BEER? HOW ARE YOU PREVENTING IT?

    Have you taken preventative measures to stop beer theft in your store? By not having the appropriate loss prevention measures in place you could be faced with one or more serious issues. Ask yourself the following questions:

    • Are you or your employees intentionally supplying minors with alcohol through beer theft?
    • Could you be opening your business up to increased liability?
    • Are you using scares police resources to respond to minor crimes that could be prevented?
    •  Are you putting your employees at risk by creating an unsafe and crime ridden work environment?
    • Are you doing your best to assist with the prosecution process by showing up for court when an arrest is made?

    BEER THEFT FACTS

    Beer Theft, also known as “Beer Runs” is a type of shoplifting that has been around for years. Typically, a person will  enter a convenience store where  there is a lone clerk behind  the counter, pick up a single can, six pack, or even a case of beer and simply walk out the front door  right  past  the clerk.   The very nature of the  crime makes it  confrontational between the clerk and the suspect, increasing the potential  for violence.  Many clerks have been instructed to let the person leave the store without trying to stop them or recover the merchandise and to then call the police. This method reduces the likelihood of injury to the clerk, but without the proper loss prevention methods in place, it increases the chance the business will be a repeated victim of theft. The purpose of this brochure is to outline some prevention methods that reduce the likelihood of crime and increase the safety of employees.

    Tip#1

    Many times the suspect will make repeated trips to the same convenience store and commit additional beer thefts if they are not caught. If you or one of your clerks recognizes a person coming into the store who has stolen beer in the past, they should call the police immediately. Don’t wait for the person to steal again. An officer in the area has a better chance of catching the suspect if they are already in route as soon as that person enters the store.

    Tip #2

    Make sure that your video cameras produce high enough quality recording that the suspects can easily be identified when reviewing the tapes after a beer theft. Once someone gets away with a crime, they are much more likely to try again. They also spread the word quickly that this is an easy location to steal from. Good quality, clear recordings often result in catching the criminal and deterring future crimes at the same location.

    The hidden costs of beer theft

    Beer theft costs everyone. Not only does it cost the retailer in lost product, but consumers end up paying more as well. Not only will they pay more at the cash register, but taxes will rise to cover the additional costs related to law enforcement to combat crime. The corner store is no longer a safe place to stop by and pick up a few items. No one wants to be in the way of a person committing a beer theft and take a chance that they may or may not be armed. When customers no longer feel safe, they quit visiting their favorite neighborhood convenience store. When that happens, retailers are now losing both the products that are stolen and the profits from the customers that no longer want to shop in their stores. Your store becomes known on the street as an “easy mark” for criminals.

    Other Crimes

    If beer theft appears to have no consequences, other crimes may be attempted.

    Police time – repeated calls to the same location takes time away from other important calls.

    Increased cost to consumers – Someone has to pay for the lost products and profits.

    Increased insurance costs – Repeated reports can cost in extra premiums.

    Dangerous Location – No one wants to shop where a crime is being committed on a regular basis. Profits drop as a result.

    Sale Hours

    By reducing the open hours of selling alcohol, you can decrease your chances of beer theft during the peak times. For instance, if you lock up your beer from midnight to 6 a.m. so that a person has to request the product, it is much more difficult for them to run out of the store without paying. Simply have them pay for it before you supply them with the product. If possible, try to have to clerks on duty during your peak times so that one can retrieve the product for customers and one can stay by the cash register. Two or more clerks on duty at all times is even better for safety reasons. If you only have one clerk on duty, you need to put more efficient prevention methods into place.

    Beer Theft Prevention

    • Make eye contact with each customer as they enter the store.
    • Greet each customer with at least a simple, “hi.” Now they know that you are aware of them in the store.
    • Have a panic alarm button behind the counter for the clerks.
    • Keep only empty beer boxes on displays.
    • Shrinkwrap later area displays so beer cannot be easily grabbed.
    • Use a buzzer on the door to the beer cooler so the clerk knows when someone opens it
    • Raise the store clerk’s area 6-12 inches above the floor. The clerk will appear taller and they can see the entire store easier.
    • Put mirrors in each corner so the clerk can watch all activity in every area of the store.
    • Arrange the store so there is not a direct route from the beer cooler or display to the door.
    • Have more than one clerk on duty at all times for safety and to deter theft.
    • Ask for and hole the ID of anyone wanting to purchase alcohol until it is paid for. This can be your store policy. One clerk can get the requested product whole the other stays with the cash register at the front counter.
    • Install good quality video cameras that give a clear picture of the suspects.
    • Train employees on how to recognize a beer theft in progress and what to note for reporting.
    • Post notices that you will prosecute for all theft.

     

     

     

     

     

    FOCUS: Personal Safety for School Employees

    School Employees are dedicated individuals who often put in countless hours to make education successful for children.

     These hours can be logged in long after the school day is over. It is very important that you keep yourself safe! You are a valued person and everyone wants to be sure the children get to continue having you at school each day! Here are some simple tips to help keep you safe:

    • Avoid working alone in any building after hours, especially from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. Burglaries often occur during these hours. Don’t put yourself at risk, stay safely at home if possible.
    • Avoid entering the school alone after dark.
    • Know your alarm code and the location of all keypads
    • If the alarm goes off, DO NOT leave without talking to police or the alarm company
    • Use the buddy system and coordinate after work times
    • If something doesn’t seem right, DO NOT enter the building!
    • Be aware of your surroundings at all times
    • Stay alert—try to avoid being too focused on work (lost in thought)
    • When working alone, avoid using earbuds/headphones
    • Keep noise to a minimum so you can hear outside sounds
    • Footsteps, doors opening/closing, voices, & anything suspicious
    • Keep the door of the room you are working in locked
    • Let someone know where you will be and for how long
    • Keep a phone with you at all times
    • Ask a friend to call and “check on you” occasionally
    • Don’t hesitate to call the Police if needed ~ trust your instincts!

    Marana Police Non-Emergency (520) 682-4032 ~ Emergency 9-1-1

     

     

    FOCUS: Bike Safety

    If your bike is stolen, call the police immediately at (520) 682-4032. Tell them who you are, where and when the bike was stolen, and give a description of the bike.

    When riding your bike there are some simple do’s and don’ts to follow to remain safe.

    Do…

    • Where a helmet and protective gear.
    • Ride with traffic; keep to the right of the road.
    • Obey all traffic regulations.
    • Use proper hand signals for turning or stopping.
    • Stop and look both ways in order to make sure that sidewalks are clear before entering.
    • Use proper headlights and red tail lights or reflectors when riding at night.
    • Walk your bike across busy streets at corners and crosswalks.

    Don’t…

    • Show off; keep your hands on the handlebars.
    • Zig Zag, race, or stunt ride in traffic.
    • Hitch rides on cars or trucks.
    • Carry passengers.
    • Carry large packages which could get in your way (use a luggage carrier or basket).
    • Wear dark clothing at night, (instead wear reflective clothing and light colors.)
    • Tailgate or ride too closely to other vehicles.

    Accidents involving bicycles are steadily increasing. Major streets are the most dangerous. The peak traffic hours between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. are the most dangerous for cyclists. Avoid busy streets as much as possible and try to plan your biking before 4 p.m.

    Bike Maintenance

    The fun of riding is missed if your bicycle doesn’t work right. Check your tires daily for air pressure and wear. Making sure the handlebars, seat/saddle and pedals are tight can prevent a fall. Lubricate the chain and wheels often. Ask your parents or a qualified bike mechanic to help you keep your bike in top condition

    Bike riding is fun, it’s exciting, and it’s a great way to explore the area where you live. You won’t be alone when you are riding; however you’ll be sharing the road with vehicles of all shapes and sizes.

    Bike riding fun should go along with bike safety. This brochure contains information that children and adults should share together so that bike riding is safe and fun for everyone.

    BEFORE YOU RIDE

     Protect your head and wear a helmet!

    • Studies have shown that using a bicycle helmet can reduce head injuries by up to 85%. Select a helmet that has a snug but comfortable fit.
    • Look for helmets that are designed and manufactured to meet or exceed the CPSC bicycle helmet standards. Make sure that the helmet you choose is designed for what you are using it for.
    • Be seen and wear proper clothes.
    • Wear clothes that make you more visible. Clothing should be light in color and close fitting to avoid being caught in the bicycles moving parts.
    • When riding after dark, you must have a front lamp that gives a white light light visible for at least 500 feet. As well as a front white reflector. A red rear reflector or tail light must be visible for at least 300 feet.
    • Be sure that books and other loose items are secured to the bike or are carried in a backpack.

    WHEN YOU RIDE

     Vision

    The first step in riding safely is being able to see the cars, trucks, or motorcycles that are on the road with you. It’s easy to see vehicles in front of you, but you will also have to see vehicles that are coming from behind. This means looking quickly over your left or right shoulder to see if any cars or trucks are coming. Before you ride on any busy street, practice the skill of steering straight ahead and looking over your should. This will help you keep control of your bike and still see the other vehicles.

    As you ride, listen for the sounds that other vehicles make as they come up from behind. By hearing these sounds early, you can more easily share the road with them.

    Moving in traffic

    Because you’re riding your bike on the same roads that cars and trucks drive on, you must obey the “Rules of the Road” like they do. Some special rules for bike riders are:

    • Stay on the right side of the street, near the curb.
    • Move with traffic and watch for parked cars turning into traffic or car doors opening suddenly.
    • Ride in single file when you are with others.
    • Obey all traffic signs, signals and road markings.
    • Use hand signals to indicate turn or stop.
    • WALK your bike across all busy intersections.
    • Do not carry passengers or packages. This can cause you to lose control.
    • Never weave from lane to lane, or hitch a ride on moving cars, trucks or motorcycles.
    • Let all pedestrians, cars, or trucks go first.

    Road Hazards

    If you are looking for a safer way to bike around our city, you may be interested to learn about special bike routes or paths in our community.

    Other Contacts:

     Pima County Department of Transportation Bicycle & Pedestrian Program, (520) 243-BIKE (2453)

    www.bikeped.pima.gov

     

    PROTECTION AGAINST THEFT

    A bike can be stolen from just about any place, but simple precautions can deter would-be bike thieves. Remember, most bikes stolen are not locked.

    Always lock your bike securely.

    If you’re at home, lock your bike in your garage, or locked to a past.

    What kind of lock should be used? Use a U-Lock, securing both wheels and the frame to a stationary object, like a post, fence, tree or bike rack. Or, you can use a high quality and a case hardened chain or cable, placing the chain or cable through both wheels, the frame and around a stationary object.

    Record the serial number of your bike and keep it with the sales receipt and a photograph of your bike. 

    Mark your bike with an engraver with your id number (if you’re an adult).