Thursday, June 09, 2016

Forrest Gump Was Right - Stupid is as Stupid Does

If you get a chance, check out these two previous posts of mine concerning auto thefts and auto burglaries:

From 11/6/15

From 11/19/15

I have been able to obtain some additional information.

Here in Shawnee we experience between 75 and 80% for unlocked, or no sign of forced entry, victim vehicles (car burglaries and car thefts).  As important as the numbers are, there is something else that needs to be talked about too - something known as "capable guardianship".  So often people go for the complex security items and systems when simple security measures are all that are needed.  Situational awareness (paying attention) and securing our homes we can really cut into those crime stats.  To reduce the risks we face, it makes sense to start with the basics and then get more complex.

There is a criminology theory, first published in 1979, known as "routine activities theory".  In simple terms this theory states that three things must be present for a crime to occur: 1. a motivated offender 2. a target and 3. an opportunity.  Individually we have the most control over the target and opportunity.  Removing targets and opportunities are how we demonstrate capable guardianship.  The police are part of that equation but it's a partnership - individuals bear some responsibility for protecting themselves and their things from those motivated offenders, and it can be as simple as locking our car doors and keeping valuables out of sight.

Here's a Wikipedia article about it.  Note the graphic that shows the confluence of the three items mentioned above.

If people who have their vehicles stolen, or items stolen from their vehicles because they did not take simple precautionary methods, are IMHO, idiots.  I could go through the list of dumb things that people do but there is not enough space here.  Some of these things are leaving your car running while you just run into the convenience store for just a second, leaving your vehicle unlocked and your cell, purse or other valuables in plain sight.

Folks, use some common sense..............there are other things our PD can do to protect and serve us besides responding to crimes that could have been avoided.