Chief Gives Advice on Scams and Theft

By Terry Clark, Salida Police Chief

Hello to all from the Salida Police Department. I hope everyone’s Holidays went well. As I know most everyone from Salida is hoping we see much more snow, as we need the moisture. Our department has been busy so far well into winter. Currently, we are in the hiring process and hope to have the selection process done in March of this year.

I want to talk about schemes and scams. This is a constant in everyone’s lives and something that we deal with on a weekly basis. The scams come in many forms, and unfortunately, a few fall into the trap, costing people money, their identity and a lot of frustration. Examples of scams are: Lottery winners coming in on your e-mail or the personal letter asking for your help in holding funds for the troubled person. These typically are from outside the country and usually the grammar is poor.

The other popular scam is the phone call where the caller is representing a credit card company, your bank, etc. The caller is seeking your personal information so they can steal your identity. Under no circumstances should you divulge any information or send any money. Our advice is to disconnect the call and report the incident to the police. In the case of solicitations by mail, report this to the police.

Another area I want to cover is tips on securing your homes and businesses. We see a fair amount of thefts and burglaries here in Salida. A few simple ideas you can do will make it more difficult for a thief to steal from you or break into your property. The simplest advice – lock your doors with deadbolts while you are away from your place and overnight while you sleep. This goes for your vehicles as well – lock them up and do not leave valuables in the vehicle unattended. We see a great deal of stolen property from unlocked/unattended vehicles. I recommend business owners install a good camera/alarm system and quality locks. In the event your business is broken into the video footage is very valuable to the police in apprehending the thief. Good lighting around your home or business also deters thieves.

The last area I want to touch on deals with firearms. We are seeing more cases of stolen firearms, some from homes and some from vehicles. More and more we find that the owner does not have the serial numbers or other information recorded. This is disturbing, given that firearms in the wrong hands gives all of us grave concerns. I would ask anyone who owns firearms to please take time to record all pertinent information, photographs of your firearms if possible and keep this information in a safe/secure location.

I thank you for your continued support of our department and if you have any questions or comments, please contact me at 719-530-2600  or e-mail at tclark@salidapolice.com.