Bossier Sheriff, Bossier City Police unveil campaign to prevent vehicle burglaries

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Sheriff Julian Whittington and Bossier Police Chief Shane McWilliams unveiled the L.O.C. campaign at a special meeting Thursday night at the Viking Drive Substation in Bossier City. (Stacey Tinsley/Press-Tribune)

By Stacey Tinsley, stinsley@bossierpress.com

The Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office and Bossier City Police Department are teaming up to create a new campaign aimed at preventing families from becoming victims of thieves.

Sheriff Julian Whittington and Bossier Police Chief Shane McWilliams unveiled the L.O.C. campaign at a special meeting Thursday night at the Viking Drive Substation in Bossier City.

“This is a crime of opportunity. Let’s not give them any opportunities,” said Sheriff Whittington. “Call us if you see anything. You’re not bothering us, this is our job.”

L.O.C. — which stands for Lock, Observe and Call — is designed to push people to start locking their car doors, as well as observe their surroundings and make sure people call the police if they see something suspicious in their neighborhood.

Chief McWilliams reiterated to the public the importance of calling police if they see anything that alarms them or gets their attention, and to not second guess themselves.

“If you see something that gets your attention and alarms you at all, call us, don’t second guess yourself. We will come out. It’s our job to determine if there is something going on,” McWilliams said. “Don’t hesitate at all, just make the call. That’s all we ask.”

At the meeting, Sheriff Whittington and Chief McWilliams spoke to local residents about the new campaign and steps they can take to prevent thefts from their vehicles.

They noted that chances of being victimized can be lowered by not leaving car doors unlocked and having valuables in plain site.

“Don’t leave your valuables in the car. You would be amazed at what people leave in their cars — expensive sun glasses, laptops, things of that nature,” said Sheriff Whittington. “It’s right there in plain view. This is the most preventable crime that we have.”

A free yard sign about the importance of Locking your vehicles, observing your surroundings and calling for help was passed out at Thursday’s public meeting.

For those unable to attend the meeting who would like a yard sign, they are available at the Viking Drive substation or the Bossier Police Department.

The law enforcement units provided helpful tips to the community to protect their personal belongings in vehicles:

DO

  •    Always lock your car!
  •     Close all windows.
  •     Remove visible items from your vehicle.
  •    Lock items in the trunk.
  •     Park in well-lit areas.

DON’T

  •  Leave items in plain view.
  •  Leave your remote garage door opener in the vehicle.
  •   Leave the engine running when you are away from the vehicle.
  •   Keep original ownership papers in your vehicle.