Taking proactive steps to curb crime in Missouri City, the Police Department will be utilizing the newly-formed Burglary and Auto Theft or “BAT” Team during the holiday season. The group, which was formed in September, specifically focuses on those crimes.
“Since the formation of the BAT Team, auto thefts have decreased 20 percent over the previous year, and auto break-ins have declined 20 percent,” Asst. Police Chief Mike Berezin said. “Eleven stolen vehicles have been recovered, 10 auto theft suspects have been arrested and over $113,000 in stolen property has been recovered.”
Missouri City Police officers are partnering with their law-enforcement counterparts in nearby cities to ensure holiday shoppers enjoy the festive season safely. Officers in Missouri City, Sugar Land and Stafford aim to reduce car burglaries through the use of targeted patrols, surveillance operations and educational opportunities. Shopping areas and health club parking lots are common spots for these types of crimes. Officers will make the areas a priority as they patrol the cities during the holiday season.
To make sure your holiday shopping experience is memorable, here are some safety tips:
• Stay alert to your surroundings and the people around you.
• If you must carry a purse, do not wrap the straps around your arms or shoulders. Instead, carry a clutch purse under your arm.
• If you return to your vehicle to unload packages and continue shopping, place your purchases in the trunk.
• Have your car keys ready and in your hand before leaving the store.
• Watch purchases while eating in mall food courts; bags as well as purses can be easily switched or taken.