Amid holiday rush, keep in mind safe shopping practices

Published: Dec. 20, 2022 at 5:11 PM EST
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - With Christmas just a few days away, some of us are still rushing around to finish the last of our holiday shopping.

The Bangor Police Department is reminding shoppers to slow down and keep some common-sense safety tips in mind.

One bit of advice is making sure your car doors are locked, especially with gifts inside. Officers say would-be criminals are looking for low-hanging fruit, such as items in plain sight. They suggest throwing a blanket over any purchases, or stashing bags in your trunk.

They say if you forget to lock your doors, the law can only do so much to protect you.

“Burglary to motor vehicle is the statute, except it has to be broken into. You have to figure out how to unlock it or smash the window or something like that. That’s a separate charge. It’s theft. If they open up your car door and take your stuff, it’s just theft. It’s a lesser charge. And it would be easier to just lock your car,” said Sgt. Jason McAmbley, public information officer, Bangor Police Department.

McAmbley also says drivers shouldn’t leave their cars running, even if they’re only getting out for just a moment. And shoppers shouldn’t leave personal items, such as a cell phone or wallet, on their cart unattended.