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Home Depot and Wichita Police Team Up to Raise Awareness About Car Break Ins


Wichita, Kan.–The local police force have partnered up with the largest home improvement retailer in the United States of America in a bid to provide awareness about and help prevent car break-ins.

On November 13, 2019, a few of Wichita law enforcement’s finest stationed themselves in the parking lot of the Home Depot located on Woodlawn and K-96.

Their goal was to see if any of Home Depot’s patrons would alert the store or call the authorities if they noticed a suspicious figure loitering in the parking lot. The said suspicious figure was also a police officer pretending to break into cars.

Authorities have observed an increase in the number of criminal activities in business parking lots. Most of these crimes have to do with car thefts or break-ins. The lack of timely alerts to authorities has also exacerbated the problem.

The Wichita Police Department hopes that their latest effort will remind shoppers to be vigilant and to report any suspicious characters loitering in parking lots.

Telltale signs that a person is a potential burglar are moving from one car to another while constantly looking at their surroundings. Other behaviors may include attempts to peer through car windows.

Should shoppers see such behaviors being exhibited by a person in a parking lot, authorities suggest notifying store staff or calling 911.

With the changing of the seasons, authorities have noticed a decrease in crimes like car break-ins. The drop in temperature serves as a deterrent to thieves who don’t want to risk being out in the cold for long periods of time. However, with the holidays fast approaching, authorities say the likelihood of car break-ins in business parking lots like Home Depot may increase.

Local authorities and security experts strongly advise against leaving any personal belongings like wallets, phones, and other portable electronic devices in the car when out shopping as these items are likely to be spotted by thieves and stolen from the vehicle.

It should be noted that early this year, Sedgwick residents experienced 12 car break-ins because of unlocked doors.

Crime safety tips to prevent car break-ins include double-checking all the car doors to see if they are locked before leaving the parking lot to go inside the store. And while it may not be a deterrent, getting a car insurance quote from Allstate or other insurance company, may help victims of car break-ins from shouldering the cost to repair their vehicle after a break in.

Security experts also recommend parking close to shop entrances, in areas that are well-lit, or in areas of the parking lot that can be clearly seen by security personnel or security cameras.

Returning to the operation staged by the Wichita police at the Home Depot parking lot, they were pleased when two shoppers reported their undercover cop to the authorities.

Both shoppers were rewarded by the Wichita Police Department and Home Depot for reporting the staged suspicious activity to the authorities.


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