Most home burglars are amateurs looking for easy targets. They are looking for homes:
- Which present the least risk of detection
- Have the greatest opportunity for easy gain
- That have the maximum potential for escape
- That appear unoccupied and unprotected
- Without adequate locks and lighting
- With open doors and windows
- That provide easy concealment from neighbors and passing motorists
Survey Your Home
Look at your home though a burglar's eyes. Does it look like an easy target? Are there obvious security weaknesses? Contact the Roswell Police Department at 770-640-4100 and have a member of the Community Relations Unit come to your house for a free home security survey. In the meantime, remember these important tips:
- Shrubbery should not obscure doors and windows. Trim the growth so that a burglar cannot work undetected.
- At night, leave a few lights burning outside your home. Lights over doorways and garages, and strategically placed floodlights will make your home less inviting to a burglar.
- Windows and doors should be securely locked. Inadequate locks should be replaced or supplemented.
- Make your home look occupied at all times.
Wooden exterior doors have either solid core or hollow core construction. Solid core doors provide the greatest security. They are able to withstand attacks by burglars, and are best suited for installation of good locks.
If an exterior door contains a glass panel or is near a window, you should install a double-cylinder deadbolt lock which requires a key to unlock it from either side of the door. This lock will prevent a burglar from reaching inside to unlock the door after breaking the glass.
Doors which swing open to the outside have exposed hinges in easy reach of the burglar. These doors can be secured by the hinge pinning technique:
- Remove opposing screws from both sides of each hinge plate
- Insert pin into hole on door frame, leaving a half inch protrusion
- Drill out opposing hold to fit pin when door is closed
Sliding Glass Doors
Sliding glass doors are also vulnerable to attacks by burglars. The pinning technique will prevent the lock from being forced or the door from being lifted from the track. Key-operated pins or grips are a preferred method of securing sliding glass doors.
- With door closed, drill hole (angle downward) through top and bottom corners of inner frame, partially into outer frame
- Insert pin or nail
Open garage doors attract burglars. Make a habit of keeping garage doors closed and locked. An open garage door with no car in sight is a clear invitation to a burglar, especially if the garage is used to store such items as bicycles, power mowers, garden tools, and other easily stolen property.
Windows are another common entry point for burglars. Double-hung windows can be easily and inexpensively secured by using the pinning technique.
- With windows closed, drill hole (angle downward) through top corners of inner frame, partially into outer frame
- Insert pin or nail
Give Your Home an Occupied Look
Most burglars are looking for unoccupied homes. If your home appears occupied, the burglar will usually look for other more inviting sites.
- When away from home, leave a radio playing.
- Always leave a few inner lights on at night.
When leaving for an extended period of time, such as a vacation, you should take several additional precautions such as:
Notify the Roswell Police Department that you plan to be away by completing a Residential Home Security Check Request. The Department will schedule periodic checks of your home.
The Roswell Police Department cannot recommend specific alarm companies and systems. Also, different residences and businesses have different needs when it comes to these systems so a recommendation for one person may not be wise for another.
Crime prevention experts recommend deadbolt locks to provide the security needed for exterior doors. The bolt should extend at least one inch into the door frame to provide adequate security. Many homes are equipped with spring-latch door locks. Most spring-latch locks can be easily jimmied by even the most inexperienced burglar. Replace or supplement any spring-latch locks with a good deadbolt lock. Many good security locks such as the jimmy-resistant rim lock are available at local hardware stores. Most importantly, remember to lock up! Even the best locks provide no protection if left unlocked and a surprising number of thefts happen because a door was not locked!