Goskagit

Over the past couple months, I have been asked numerous questions about crime trends and how specific neighborhoods are doing.

On our Sheriff’s Office website, we have a crime map that shows what specific crimes are being reported. You can click on the red or blue circle for the information.

I have been answering questions continuously on how to keep from becoming a victim of a property crime. I have written numerous articles on that very topic, but the crimes keep happening.

Burglary

From the unincorporated portions of Skagit County, burglary complaints have gone up slightly in the last couple months.

The current trends are tool sheds, outbuildings, detached garages and RVs being burglarized more often than in the past.

Some of these crimes are being committed in overnight hours. More people are home these days as we work through the pandemic, and the structures I described are being burglarized after dark.

Here are a few tips to help prevent these crimes:

n Lights left on near your RV and outbuildings are always a great idea. Remember, the thief doesn't want to be seen or heard.

n Don't make it easy. Keep your RV, tool sheds and outbuildings all locked. Kicking in a shed in your backyard makes noise.

n Cameras are very helpful to capture images of people committing these crimes.

Car prowls

Car prowls have increased during the pandemic. We are at twice the number of car prowls from Sept. 1 than in the same time frame last year.

More cars parked at home are being broken into at night. Thieves have found that some car owners leave valuables in their vehicles. Purses, wallets, cash and backpacks are some of the notable items being reported stolen. Keep your vehicle locked, and don't leave valuables in plain view. Park under a light if you have one, or install motion floodlights that illuminate your driveway.

Suspicious

This is one call for service that we hope goes up every month. This is a call we get when something just isn’t right in your neighborhood.

We are always ready to answer your call for assistance 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Our deputies will patrol your neighborhood and do all we can to ensure your area is checked thoroughly.

If you see someone walking in your neighborhood after dark who you don’t recognize, we want to hear about what you observed.

Please note below that my email address has changed. Please email me with questions, comments or concerns.

— Chad Clark is undersheriff of the Skagit County Sheriff's Office. Send questions to scsocommunity@co.skagit.wa.us

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