It’s time to think about crime prevention

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 26, 2020

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This is the time of the year when people are on the move getting things done for the holidays. Some are moving too fast and not taking the time to pay attention to their surroundings. Walking fast, driving fast and forgetting to make time to secure their homes or property is a very common mistake during this holiday season. It’s also the time of year when our law enforcement agency has to maintain maximum visibility to deter criminals.

And as usual, this is the time of year where crime prevention tactics and strategies need to be discussed…again. In my monthly editorials I have asked, reminded and yes sometimes begged the citizens to continue locking car doors and securing your valuables by not leaving them in your cars over night. Many people have purchased home surveillance systems and even doorbell cameras. And we continue to appreciate the citizens that have registered with SJSO that they have video monitoring in case we need it.

One great way to deter criminal activity in your area is to change your daily routine. Criminals are hoping that victims become complacent, but small changes like taking a different route to work makes a difference to someone who is looking to learn your routine. Picking up newspapers off your driveway and your neighbors’ driveways makes suspects see daily changes in scenery and activity. Empty your mailbox daily. Don’t leave your garbage can out past bedtime. If possible, having all those Amazon packages delivered to your work place instead of being left on your doorstep will keep petty thieves away from your home.  And year round, don’t put your home address on your luggage tags so the bad guys don’t know where you live now that you just boarded a plane.

St. John Parish government and community organizations have already sponsored a number of turkey giveaways and luncheons throughout the parish. Our citizens have always been good about ensuring the elderly and the needy don’t go without basic holiday needs. And as soon as all the hustle and bustle of the holidays is over, it’s back to planning for 2021 here at the Sheriff’s Office.

In my first article of the 2021, I will be discussing the formation of a Citizens Advisory Committee. This would consist of 12 citizens from all parts of St. John Parish who can meet with me and members of my administration throughout the year to discuss concerns, or get updates on new programs and technology and even make suggestions about the performance of SJSO as it relates to crime reduction in our community. Details are coming soon.

And for the final time in 2020, please stay vigilant, watch out for your neighbors, lock your vehicles and be kind to someone in need.  I wish you and your family a very a healthy and happy 2021!


Mike Tregre is the elected sheriff of St. John the Baptist Parish. The St. John Sheriff’s Office can be reached at 985-652-9513.