Shopping Safety: Combat Crime with Common Sense

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FAIRLAWN, Ohio — ‘Tis the season to shop.

For the criminals out there, it is the perfect opportunity to strike while shoppers are pre-occupied with buying presents.

The Fairlawn Police Department has some tips to help you have a safer holiday shopping experience.

“It’s that time of year.  We do see a spike in purse snatching, theft, fraud-related crimes, stolen credit cards,” said Det. Dave Zampelli.

Zampelli says thieves are out there and if you want to protect yourself you should follow some simple safety tips.

“I think as a general rule there is safety in numbers.  I think you significantly reduce your chance of being a crime victim in a retail environment if you are with, at least with, one other or more individuals,” Zampelli said.

When it comes to parking, park in a well-lit area, and if practical, near a main door.  Locking your car door is a crucial step to preventing theft.

And some shoppers say while they are in the stores they try to keep a watchful eye on their possessions so they aren’t taken.

“This time of year and most of the time, really, when I take a purse, I always carry it in front of me and I make sure the zipper is toward me so I can feel if anyone tries to unzip it and reach into the pocket,” said Michelle Redline of Fairlawn.

“I always make sure that my purse is near me and the car is by me at all times or knowing where it’s at,” said Develyn Donald of Akron.

“I make sure that I have a short strap on my purse that’s under my arm and I keep my other hand on it all the time,” said Brenda Murphy of Akron.

Click here for the list of most shoplifted items.


  • Sue Cox

    I would suggest a shoulder strap on the purse and wear it under your coat. Also you might consider wearing a fanny pack around your waist instead of a purse.

  • Joe Code stud

    Also, avoid areas where unruly ghetto teenagers hang out. If you see unruly teenagers coming, cross the street or seek safety in the store.

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