The Johnson County Sheriff's Office has seen an increase recently in the amount of burglaries and theft in our area, especially involving firearms. Authorities would like to remind all residents that own firearms to always be sure they have an up-to-date listing of serial numbers for all of their inventory.
While it might be time consuming, depending on the number of firearms owned, it can greatly assist in the investigation and hopeful recovery of any stolen merchandise. Additionally, it's always a good idea to have serial numbers of electronics and other valuables in your home recorded and stored in a safe, private location. Some residents use a digital camera to take photographs of their merchandise, or even use a video camera to record a "tour" of their property, with an audio narrative of the merchandise, focusing on serial numbers, etc.
We have provided a simple, general serial number list with this article for you to download, make copies, and use. If you are unable to print the form, contact us for an e-mailed copy at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Sheriff's Office. You might also check with your insurance agent to see if they have printed forms.
As a reminder, please take a few minutes to do a general inventory around your home and property regarding ways to possibly avoid burglaries from being attempted.
Outside Your Home
- Trim shrubs so windows and doors are in full view from the street. Unobstructed doors and windows are a deterrent because the intruder is forced to work in the open where detection is likely.
- Maintain adequate lighting, especially at vulnerable entry points.
Be sure to always have your windows and doors securely and tightly locked including your garage.
- All exterior doors should be metal clad or solid hardwood. Doors of this type resist forced entry because they are not easily battered or bored.
- Install a 180 degree wide-angle viewer in exterior door to see who is at the door before opening it. These viewers are available from locksmiths and hardware stores.
Sliding Glass Doors:
- Place a length of wood in the lower track. Make sure it fits snug and cannot be popped out of the track by an intruder.
- It is easy for a burglar to pry a sliding glass door from its track. To prevent this, install three, one and one-fourth inch large head sheet metal screws in the upper track of the movable door. Make sure they protrude far enough so the sliding frame just clears.
While Away From Home
During vacations or other trips, follow these tips to make your home appear occupied. They will discourage burglaries.
- Ask a trusted neighbor to:
- Park in your driveway or in front of your home.
- Occasionally place garbage in your garbage can.
- Mow the lawn or shovel sidewalks.
- Check your home for anything unusual.
- Pick up your mail and newspapers.
- Either use automatic timers or recruit a trusted neighbor to turn lights on at dusk and off at your bedtime. Vary the lights to be turned on and occasionally have a radio turned on. Never leave lights or the radio on constantly.
- Leave your drapes in the normal position. Have a neighbor close them at night, open them at daylight and reposition them every day or so.
- Keep your garage door closed and locked so no one can see your car is gone or other equipment in your garage.
- Tell a neighbor where you can be reached in an emergency.
- Don't let your travel plans be widely known.