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With the holidays approaching, the Victorville Police Department would like to provide shoppers with some safety tips to help keep them safe. When shopping, don't leave any valuables in plain view inside of your vehicle. Conceal items by placing them in the trunk, prior to arriving at your destination. If your vehicle is equipped with a trunk release button, disable it so a thief cannot access the trunk. Park your vehicle in a well lit area of the parking lot, as close to the front of the store as possible and shop with a group. If you must carry a purse, hold on to it tightly on your shoulder, with one arm grasping the strap or keep it concealed in one of your shopping bags. Keep your credit cards and cash in your front pocket to maintain easy access to them while you are shopping and keep your receipts in a safe place. If your purse should be stolen, your cards and cash will still be safe.

Once you finished shopping, call someone and tell them you are leaving the mall. Try and combine your smaller bags in a larger shopping bag. This will create the illusion you have made less purchases. Keep one hand free and have your keys in hand to be ready to open the car door. Once you start to approach your car, be aware of your surroundings to ensure no one is following you and walk with confidence. Place your packages in the passenger seat, then lock the door once you get in. The Victorville Police Department plans on increasing patrols in the malls and shopping centers during the holiday shopping season by utilizing extra deputy patrols, explorer scouts and citizen patrol volunteers. Report any suspicious persons or activity to your local Sheriff's Department. Call 911 for emergencies and (760) 245-4211 for non-emergencies.

Sgt. B. Zeigler Victorville Police Department (760) 241-2911