Crime Reporting – Phoning in a Crime
Every year hundreds of crimes occur in Spotswood. Approximately half of all crimes are reported to the police. It is likely that more than 50 per cent of all crimes that take place are witnessed by neighbors looking out of their windows, by a person walking a dog, and hearing the sounds of breaking glass, or by a driver observing a person swerving all over the road.
Why don’t people report crime?
In most cases it is because they don’t want to get involved, they are afraid of being wrong, or they are not sure what to do.
A five-minute delay in reporting crime reduces the chance of catching a criminal by 65 per cent.
The emergency number for reporting a crime in progress is 911.
The phone number for non-emergency complaint calls is 732-251-2121.
Guidelines to calling the police:
Stay calm – don’t get excited
Take a deep breath and state the problem:
“I want to report a crime….”
a break and enter in progress
an injury accident
a suspicious vehicle or person
State the address of where the crime is occurring:
Give full address
Give directions from nearest cross street, i.e. north, south, east, west, in the alley at the rear
Give name, address and phone number where you are calling from
Let the police dispatcher control the conversation:
Answer all questions
If you wish, tell police you wish to remain anonymous
Give your phone number so police can call back later if necessary
Don’t hang up – stay on the line.
Only hang up when told to do so by the operator.
Major factors in describing suspects:
Description of Crime
How suspects left area and direction of travel.
Type of weapon
Be aware and practice these precautions:
Be alert to odd behaviour of others.
Be familiar with surroundings
Be aware of strangers
Be on the lookout for the unusual, such as unfamiliar cars in the neighborhood, strangers, and unusual phone calls.
Reporting a crime is not a hard thing to do. The police dispatcher will “walk” you through the complaint. If you wish to remain anonymous, the police will respect that wish. Remember a five-minute delay in reporting a crime reduces the chance of catching the criminal by 65 per cent.
Imagine how you would feel if you were being attacked on the street, calling out for help, and no one would come to help you. Your faith in mankind would be lowered considerably.
Yell FIRE – it always attracts attention.
It is your duty as a citizen to report crime. Get involved. Make your community a safer place to live.