NPD offers safety tips for holiday season as thieves target parked vehicles

After a post was made on Facebook claiming that 12 cars were broken into on Nov. 27 during the Christmas festival fireworks show in the downtown Natchitoches area.

The NPJ decided to confirm this information with the Natchitoches Police Department. It was confirmed that a total of 10 vehicle burglaries were reported on Saturday evening. The vehicle burglaries were a combination of unlocked doors and glass being shattered to gain entry. In several of the burglaries the property was in plain view and the suspects were able to see inside of the vehicles to steal the items.

The NPD would like to share a few tips with the holiday season approaching. During this special time of year we can all become careless and vulnerable to theft and other holiday crime. Below are a few tips on how to stay safe while enjoying the 95th Natchitoches Christmas Festival.

  • Avoid driving alone or at night.
  • If you must shop at night try to park in a well-lit area.
  • Try to park as close as you can to your destination.
  • Never leave your vehicle unoccupied with the motor running or with children and pets inside.
  • Notify your credit card issuer or bank immediately if your card is lost or stolen to prevent any unwanted charges.
  • Never leave packages or valuables in the seat of your vehicle.  If you must leave any items in your vehicle try to lock them in the trunk or put them out of sight to prevent a potential burglary.
  • If you pay to park in a private lot make sure they are providing security.
  • Be sure to locate your keys prior to going to your vehicle.
  • Let your child know prior to attending the Natchitoches Christmas Festival that if they get lost to locate the nearest police officer so they can be returned to you safely.
  • Do not approach your vehicle alone if there are suspicious people in the area.
  • Keep a secure hold on your purse, handbags or items.  You can also use this technique to secure your purse or handbag to a shopping basket.

The Natchitoches Police Department wishes you a safe and happy holiday season.

If you would like to report suspicious activity please contact the Natchitoches Police Department at (318) 352-8101. Remember all information given shall remain confidential.

How to report an anonymous tip via Natchitoches Crime Stoppers:

You can also report a tip anonymously by calling Natchitoches Crime Stoppers at (318) 238-2388. All tips remain confidential and the caller can receive a cash reward up to $2,000 for the arrest of an offender.

Photos: Theresa McLaren

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