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During the holidays, it's not uncommon for cities across the country to see upticks in crime rates. Typical holiday crimes tend to involve either theft or poor decisions. While you may not be able to safeguard yourself from everything, knowing about the common holiday crimes might be enough to prevent becoming a victim.
Below, you'll find 5 common holiday crimes that everyone should know about.
1. Shoplifters and Pickpockets
When the masses are out shopping, businesses and customers need to remain vigilant as crowded retail establishments are a boon for shoplifters and pickpockets alike. While stores will usually hire extra security to stop shoplifters, shoppers need to remain alert about their own personal belongings.
2. Vehicle Burglars
Vehicle break-ins happen much more frequently during the holiday season because criminals expect to find gifts in cars. Car burglars, particularly near shopping centers, are looking for cars filled with gifts. A common trick of parking lot thieves is to wait in the parking lot until they see someone drop off purchases at their car, then return to shop.
3. Porch Pirates
Online shopping continues to increase in popularity year after year. For one type of burglar, known as a porch pirate, deliveries for online shoppers are easy targets. Porch pirates will drive through neighborhoods stealing recently delivered packages that sit unattended on a person porch or front step. These criminals have more opportunity during the holiday season due to the increase in online shopping and package deliveries.
4. Festive Decoration Vandals
Despite how funny it may be for a light up Rudolph to get his revenge on a blow up Santa, when a person moves around another person's holiday decorations, or destroys the decorations, this is actually vandalism. Although your friends, neighbors, or the internet may approve, the police and the people who purchased and set up the display probably will not. Remember, practical jokes are funny until you have to spend a night or even an hour in a cell.
5. Drunk Drivers
Among the worst decision a person can make during the holiday season is to drive drunk, yet every year, more people are hurt, killed, and incarcerated for DUIs. While the eggnog might be delicious, or you may want to have a few drinks at the company holiday party, or to take the edge off shopping, driving drunk, buzzed, or over the legal limit is just not worth the risk. If the fear of killing or injuring another person isn't enough, even a first DUI can cost several thousand dollars. It can also have a ripple effect causing a loss of employment and ruined holiday season for your family.