Report all suspicious activity

With the increase in reported robberies and burglaries in and around the Wards Corner area, please be reminded to report all suspicious activity to the police.  What is suspicious?  Below is an excerpt from the Norfolk Neighborhood Coordinators’ Manual, developed  by the Crime Prevention Division of the Norfolk Police Department.

WHAT IS SUSPICIOUS?
“Basically, anything that seems even slightly out of the ordinary . . . could be criminal activity.”
Examples (not a complete list):
  • ƒA stranger inspecting or entering your neighbor’s home while your neighbor is away.
  • Someone trying to open a neighbor’s door or window.
  • A moving truck or van pulled up to a  neighbor’s home while they are gone.
  • Remember, burglaries often occur at times when they should be most obvious (broad daylight, in full view of observers).
  • Someone carrying property such as televisions, stereos, etc., at an unusually late hour or in an unusual place, especially if it does not appear that the property is newly purchased.
  • The sound of shattering glass could signal a possible burglary, vandalism or larceny in progress.
  • Anyone peering into vehicles as they walk down the street or someone removing tags, gasoline or parts from a vehicle.
  • Someone attempting to enter a vehicle using a coat hanger or other device.
  • Never assume that it is the owner who has locked his keys in his car.  Be suspicious of anyone tampering with the hood or trunk of a car.
  • An improperly parked vehicle or abandoned  vehicle or someone leaving one vehicle and driving away in another may be signs of a stolen vehicle.
  • Anyone being forced into a vehicle could be a victim of possible abduction.
  • Persons loitering around schools, parks, and isolated areas or in the neighborhood.  These loiterers could be possible sex offenders or burglars.
  • Business transactions conducted from  vehicles, especially around schools, playgrounds or parks.
  • A steady flow of strangers to and from a particular house on a regular basis could indicate drug sales or a fencing operation (purchasing
  • of stolen goods).
  • Offers of goods or repair work at an unusually low price could indicate stolen property or some type of fraud.
  • All fights, screams and loud noises (such as explosions) should be reported.
  • Door-to-door solicitors without properly issued licenses and identification should be suspected.
“DON’T WAIT FOR SOMEONE ELSE  TO CALL.  CALL THE POLICE IMMEDIATELY TO REPORT IN PROGRESS SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY.”
Emergency:  911    Non-Emergency:  441-5610
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10 Responses to Report all suspicious activity

  1. Dawn says:

    call the police and wait a long time….

  2. Tutu says:

    Is there a way we can keep solicitors from coming door-to-door in the neighborhood? Why must we allow soliciting when Talbot Park is having an ongoing crime problem? Is my own walkway part of my private property so I can expect “no trespassing” if I post a sign? If so, at least potential thieves might be deterred from walking up to my door to see if I answer the doorbell.

    • Keith T says:

      There is no way to stop solicitors from going door-to-door, but you can post a “No Trespassing” sign on your property as you have described, and you could then prosecute anyone who does not comply.

  3. Melody says:

    I reported solicitors yesterday to the police and gave my address and told them about the issues we have been having in this area. We watched for over an hour and never saw a police car on my street.

    • Keith T says:

      There were multiple reports of solicitors in the area yesterday. The solicitors were all checked by police and were cleared. They may not have been checked again in response to your call if they had been previously cleared. They were warned about soliciting in Talbot Park due to the recent burglaries, but they have a right to be there if they choose as long as they are not violating any laws.

      • Scott Guirlinger says:

        Solicitors are not allowed unless they are registered with the Norfolk police department, in which case they must carry identification stating such. Please continue to call the police regarding any solicitors that do not show proper identification. I believe grade-school fundraisers are the only exception. See section 40 of the city code and the state consumer affairs website for details.

      • Keith T says:

        Section 40 of the City Code pertains to charitable solicitations, not door-to-door salesmen. There is no requirement for door-to-door salesmen to register with the Police Department.

  4. Scott Guirlinger says:

    I’ve done quite a bit of research into this, from both the homeowner side and the solicitor side, and what I can say is there is a big difference between Solicitors (asking for money) and Promoters/Advertisers (spreading information). There is very little to stop promoters/advertisers beyond a “no trespassing” sign. Solicitors, however, in almost every case must be registered with the city police department and carry proper identification. This is similar to how homeless people are allowed to hold signs that say “help me” but are not allowed to ever verbally ask for money. Bottom line – if someone knocks on your door asking for money and doesn’t show identification showing they are registered with the city police (a driver’s license does NOT cut it), call the police and report them. I do every time now.

    • Scott Guirlinger says:

      One additional comment – I have yet to find a legal means to stop/discourage businesses from putting door flyers/hangers on our porch. If someone knows of a means beyond an ugly ‘no trespassing’ sign I’d love to hear it. These serve little purpose beyond signaling to potential thieves that no one has opened the front door recently when the flyer stays up too long.

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