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Crime prevention tips

Police

The Brunswick Division of Police needs your help to reduce crime in your neighborhood. Please take a moment to review the following simple, yet effective crime prevention tips. All of us working together can make an impact. Click the tabs below to view important crime prevention tips.

*72 scam alert

If someone calls you and requests that you dial *72 along with another phone number, do not do this. This will allow them to charge phone calls to your phone number.

 

Identity theft alert — jury duty scam

The scammer calls claiming to work for the local court. He claims that you have failed to report for jury duty and a warrant has been issued for your arrest. The victim will then rightly claim that they never received any type of notification regarding the jury duty. The scammer will then ask the victim for confidential information for “verification purposes.” Specifically, the scammer will ask for the victims social security number, date of birth, and sometimes even credit card numbers and other private information. This is exactly what the scammer needs to commit identity theft. Preventative action: Never give out your Social Security number, credit card numbers or other personal and confidential information when you receive a telephone call. The Jury Duty scam is a variation on identity theft scams where the telephone is used to try and get people to reveal their personal information.

 

Consumer fraud and general scams

In addition to the specific scams listed above, there are a host of other scams to be aware of. Always remember the basic rules: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, There’s no such thing as a free lunch, and “buyer beware”. Below are some common scams seen in Brunswick, some ways to protect yourself and some additional resources for you to use.

  • Be wary of emails promising “free” vacations, foreign lotteries, work-at-home offers, get-rich-quick investments, or donations to charities you’ve never heard of. If you’re interested, call the company directly, check fraud web sites, and never provide your personal information in a return email.
  • Beware of cheap home repair work that would otherwise be expensive. The con artist may only do part of the work, uses shoddy materials and untrained workers, or simply take your deposit and never return. Never pay with cash. Never accept offers from driveup workers who “just happen” to be in the neighborhood. If they’re reliable, they’ll come back after you check them out.
  • Be cautious of checks and money orders you did not expect or for more than the asking price on an item. The con artist may send you a $500 money order for a $100 item. Then, ask you to send him the difference minus a convenience charge for yourself. The money order turns out to be fake and you are out the difference.

Protect yourself:

  • Never give a caller your credit card, phone card, Social Security, or bank account number over the phone. It is illegal for telemarketers to ask for these numbers to verify a prize or gift.
  • Beware 900 numbers. Remember if you call a 900 number to claim a “prize”, you’ll end up paying for the call. Make sure you understand all charges when making a call.
  • Take your time and shop around. Don’t let an aggressive con artist pressure you into making a decision. Demand information in writing by mail. Get a second opinion. Ask your family, friends and neighbors what they think about certain offers.
  • Stay informed about current scams in your area. Contact your state Attorney General’s office, the Better Business Bureau, or local consumer affairs office for more information.

*Information here was obtained from the National Crime Prevention Council and the United States Postal Service.

Helping us enforce the City curfew will reduce the likelihood that minors will become involved in criminal acts and assist in keeping them from becoming victims of criminal acts themselves.

According to Brunswick City Ordinance 648.10, no person shall permit any minor under the age of eighteen to be on any street, sidewalk or other public place in the City between the hours of 11:00 pm and 5:00 am on weekdays, and between 12:00 midnight and 5:00 am on Sundays.

Police officers may issue a Curfew citation to the parent(s) or guardian(s) of the child if a violation occurs. Curfew is a minor misdemeanor and the fine is $140.00.

For further information and exceptions, see the full text in the City of Brunswick’s codified ordinances.

Here are some tips on how to not become a burglary victim:

  • Never leave doors unlocked even if you are only leaving for a few minutes or are working in the back yard.
  • Do not leave windows open overnight or while you are away from home.
  • Close and lock your garage door. Do not leave garage door openers in unlocked vehicles or in plain view in locked vehicles.

If there are signs of a burglary (broken window, forced door, etc.):

  • Call 911 immediately from a cell phone or a neighbor’s house. Do not take the chance of confronting a burglar inside.
  • Do not touch anything or clean anything up. Latent fingerprints obtained on surfaces, doors or windows may help officers discover the identity of the burglars.

Here are some tips on how to prevent auto break-ins:

  • Lock your car doors and close your windows. Thieves target unlocked vehicles.
  • Do not leave valuables in your car, even if the car is locked. Thieves love to “window shop.” Secure GPS units, laptop computers, cell phones, purses, wallets, after market electronic equipment, loose change, etc. in the trunk or remove them from the vehicle altogether.
  • Do not leave keys in the ignition or anywhere inside the vehicle.
  • If possible, park your car in your garage with the garage door closed and locked.

If there are signs of an auto break-in:

  • Call 330-225-9111 to report the theft.
  • Do not touch anything or clean anything up. Latent fingerprints obtained on surfaces, doors or windows may help officers discover the identity of the thief.

Do not leave bikes lying around the yard. Secure them in the garage overnight with the door closed and locked.

Lock your bike and both wheels to an immovable object that cannot be cut or broken. Use a good quality-locking device, such as a hardened steel “U” shaped lock or a hardened steel chain and padlock.

The Brunswick Division of Police Bicycle Registration Program can aid in the recovery of lost or stolen bicycles. Click on “Bicycle registration” in the Police department menu on this page.

Please be aware that it is illegal to possess or discharge fireworks in the City of Brunswick without a permit. A police officer will cite any violators.

Possessing or discharging a firework is a first-degree misdemeanor in violation of Brunswick City Ordinance 672.09(f) and the fine is $515.00. This is a non-waiverable offense and a court appearance will be required.

For further information, see the full text in the City of Brunswick’s codified ordinances.

Report suspicious activity immediately!


Dial 330-225-9111 to report suspicious activity in your neighborhood. If there is an immediate threat to life or property, dial 9-1-1.

Stay calm and tell the dispatcher:

  • where the crime is occurring
  • what is happening
  • weapons involved
  • who is involved
  • when it happened

Try to get a good look at the persons and vehicles involved as safely as possible. Look for:

  • vehicle plate numbers, color, make and model
  • suspect clothing descriptions
  • direction of travel

Stay on the line, if it is safe to do so, to give the dispatcher updates.