Police fighting holiday shopping criminals

By Evrod Cassimy – bio | email

HANOVER, VA (WWBT) – As the holiday season begins with Black Friday many crooks are going to work looking to steal from you. Thankfully, the Hanover County Sheriff's Department is looking to protect shoppers and beefing up security to deter criminal activity.

"Through a strong presence, high visibility, high saturation, we feel that we are more accessible to the citizens of Hanover County," said Lt. Scott Carter. "We have reserve officers who are in the retail areas, patrolling the retail areas during the Christmas break."

Lieutenant Carter with the Hanover County Sheriff's Office has seen this increase in patrols help fight crime for the past ten years. It's something that makes the shoppers we caught up with feel safe during all the hustle and bustle.

"You don't have to worry so much about going out alone," said shopper, Kathleen Martin. "I don't like shopping by myself."

"Just keep people at bay," said shopper, Amelia Sandiford. "They know they're out there so they'll be less likely to do it."

And while police are visibly defending your belongings, keeping your purchases away from criminals starts with you.

"I lock the car and make sure it's always locked up," said Martin.

"I cover them up, put them in the trunk, make sure my cars lock and sometimes go home and drop them off," said Sandiford.

These are all good ideas to help deter crime. Still Hanover officers and courtesy patrol citizens will be visible over the next few weeks to add an extra layer of protection. You'll see the officers and courtesy patrol members making their rounds in a shopping center. The heightened patrol begins on Black Friday and continue across area shopping centers through the end of the year.

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