For A Merry Christmas, Don’t Forget to Lock Cars, Watch Purses
While Brecksville is a relatively safe place, crime can happen anywhere. Thefts have been the most common kind of crime in the city for the past three years.
With the holidays closing in, Brecksville Police Chief Dennis Kancler said residents should remember to be aware and safeguard their belongings, especially during this time of year.
"This is a very safe and trusting town," said Kancler, who retires in January after 21 years as chief. "But this is a premier time of the year for this type of crime. We put gifts under the tree and the bad guys want to take them."
"Be prepared," Kancler said. "Lock your car; don't leave valuables in plain sight. It's about situational awareness. People have to be cautious."
He praised his 28-member department, saying they have a high clearance rate, meaning they solve many of the crimes that do occur in the city. Theft has been the most common crime in Brecksville for the last several years.
Pat Kramer, the manager at Heinen's Brecksville store, said they have not had any thefts at the grocery store, but employees remain vigilant to protect against it.
Employees make sure to remind shoppers to stay close to their purses. Kramer said shoppers might have their minds on other things and wander away from their carts.
"We're always on the look-out for that," Kramer said.
Crime statistics from 2007-2009, taken from the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program, show an average of 49 reported thefts in Brecksville per year. Examples of thefts include shoplifting, pick-pocketing or stealing anything not taken by force or fraud. Kancler said sometimes people leave their car doors unlocked with valuables inside and this makes their belongings easy targets for thieves.
- In 2009, there were a total of nine violent crimes reported in Brecksville and 55 property crimes, including 14 burglaries and 41 thefts.
- In 2008, there was one violent crime and 72 property crimes, including 13 burglaries, 54 thefts and five motor vehicles thefts.
- In 2007, there were seven violent crimes and 58 property crimes, including five burglaries and 53 thefts.