Crime doesn’t always pay. In Concord, NH, police recently arrested a group of four women who stole more than $1000 worth of merchandise at a local Walmart. This is just the tip of the iceberg—with the cost of retail crime up 27 percent over the last year, how do companies keep losses down and items on store shelves?
New England is rapidly becoming a technology haven—the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce has plans to focus on “the technology sector and innovation economy” in 2015, according to the Boston Herald. Groups like the Advanced Cyber Security Center (ACSC) are looking for ways to help keep tech companies safe in this burgeoning investment environment; what can brick-and-mortar businesses learn from these tech-focused efforts?
Is that guy passed-out drunk, or is that a dead body? Ketchup, or blood? What’s going on here?
On Becker College campus, the confusion is understandable thanks to the new John Dorsey Sr. Crime Scene Laboratory, named after one of the college’s longest-serving law professors. The 1100 square-foot lab is designed to mimic the horror and authenticity of real crime scenes, and according to Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Earley, a friend of Professor Dorsey, “I got the heebie-jeebies. It was that realistic.” The idea behind the sometimes gruesome vignettes is to give students a leg up in the real world, especially if they’re looking at a career in law enforcement or forensics.
Birthdays are supposed to be happy occasions: cake, balloons, and the company of close friends. However, for one Stamford man late last year, $100 in birthday cash led to a very strange series of events.
According to Lohud, it all started when the autistic man received $100 for his birthday. He was quickly befriended by 27 year-old Steven St. Jacques, also of Stamford, who played a “game” with the victim, which involved taking the money and then pretending to put it back into the man’s pocket. Police posted security footage of the event on YouTube and later arrested St. Jacques at his home, where they recovered clothing matching that worn by the suspect in the video. The victim was presented with a new gift: $1300 collected by the police union.
Over the last 10 years, Boston has amassed an inventory of 336 unsolved murders. Now, Mayor Martin J. Walsh, District Attorney Daniel F. Conley, and high-ranking members of the Boston police department are promising change: what’s in store to make the city safer?
According to the Boston Herald, one initiative is the creation of a community advisory group which will partner community leaders with police to help address crime in specific neighborhoods. Taking this idea a step further is the privately-operated StreetSafe Boston which looks for ways to assist troubled youth at risk of becoming repeat offenders in adulthood.
There’s a clear mandate here to create a more community-minded Boston, one that focuses on neighborhoods rallying together behind disenfranchised youth to take back control of their streets and help limit crime through accountability and understanding — but that’s just the beginning.
The mayoral race in Providence is heating up — both Republican and Democratic candidates are calling out opponents who they say haven’t done enough. Their big concern? Crime.
According to a recent WPRI.com article, the crime reduction plan forwarded by Republican Michael Solomon came under fire from Democrat Brett Smiley, who says that his opponent “has not provided any real leadership on public safety.” Solomon’s campaign manager shot back at Smiley, calling his statement “more sad, empty rhetoric from someone who hasn’t even lived in the city for ten years.”
It was a quiet June day on Dexter Street in Providence, Rhode Island when arsonist Shantey Nared approached a vacant house and set it ablaze. The home next door was also damaged as Shantey fled the scene — thanks to video surveillance, he was later caught and now faces a charge of first-degree arson, according to NBC 10 News.
For New England business and homeowners, however, this kind of daylight arson presents significant risk: how do your protect your property from the unexpected (and often random) crime of arson?
Before you know it, school will be out for the summer and you’ll be trying to figure out if your child is old enough to stay home alone during the day while you’re at work or out running errands.
Many states, including Massachusetts, don’t have laws on the books indicating at what age a child is old enough to stay home alone. However, the Washington, D.C.-based Safe Kids Worldwide says that developmentally, children are typically ready to be home alone around the age of 12 or 13.
Despite your child’s age, only you can determine if he or she is ready to stay home alone this summer.
Take a look at recent police incident reports. Including ones right in your town. They are featured on the Police and Fire Logs posted in many places including Patch.com. You’ll see many reports of home break-ins.
In just one week, police in Easton, MA received calls about an individual who broke into a garage and stole a wallet from a vehicle as well as another thief who broke into a house and stole a video game system. In late August, three separate break-ins were reported, two occurred in the afternoon and the third in the early evening.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2010 there were approximately 2,159,878 burglaries – 60.5% of those burglaries involved forcible entry. Residential property burglaries accounted for 73.9% of all offenses. Read more
Robbery, as other crimes against business, is most often a crime of opportunity. But, according to the Boston Police Department, there are extra precautions you can take to keep the bad guys at bay.
To prevent a robbery:
- Don’t put any signs or posters on your front doors and windows to ensure you have good two-way visibility. That way your employees can see any people who are acting suspiciously outside and passers-by can see what’s going on inside;
- Be sure the outside of your business is well lit at night;
- Use video surveillance and post a sign letting people know you use it. Use cameras and/or mirrors so you can observe your entire store;
- Greet everyone who enters your business. Pay close attention to people pretending to be customers. These individuals will be loitering or glancing around your store while they pretend to shop or browse through magazines;
- If you see something suspicious report it to the police. Your local police department may have knowledge of other robberies that are similar to what you’re reporting;
- Be sure to lock your side and back doors. If it’s possible, ask your employees to use the main entrance;
- Place markers at the entrance that employees can use to help determine the height of a robber as he leaves;
- Make bank deposits as often as possible, but at least once a day.
The Boston Police Department also has some tips to keep you safe during a robbery:
- Try to stay calm;
- Don’t make any sudden movements to upset the robber;
- Do as exactly what the robber tells you to do. Don’t resist;
- Try to get a good look at the robber so that you can describe him to police later;
- Notice the direction the robber traveled when he left your store;
- If you can do it without putting yourself in danger, try and get a description of the robber’s vehicle.
After the robbery:
- Call the police immediately after the robbery, even if you’ve already activated your alarm;
- Go outside when the police arrive so they’ll know the robber has left and you’re safe;
- Don’t touch anything that the robber may have touched so police can identify his fingerprints;
- Ask any witnesses to stay or get their names and telephone numbers so police can contact them;
- Don’t tell anyone except the police how much money was taken.
Remember, no business is too small for a business security system. Today, a good business security system should include a business video surveillance system, which can send out digital alerts to automatically notify the authorities as soon as suspicious behavior is detected in or around your business. And that means police officers and private security guards are often able to catch those bad guys before they do any damage.
In the words of Ben Franklin, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”