KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
December 20, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
‘Tis the season for last minute shopping. Local stores report in-person shopping mostly back to normal this season and Katyites report problems in the parking lots on social media. Katy authorities share how to stay safe while finishing your shopping list.
Katy Residents Talk Local Crime
Social media sites seem loaded with local reports of residents experiencing problems in Katy parking lots. One man shared his story of having packages taken while he was returning the shopping cart to the rack. Another says someone grabbed some bags and took off while they were loading their car.
Fortunately, in most cases, people are not harmed but the trauma of such events hurt the holiday spirit.
According to deputies with Harris County Constable Ted Heap’s Office Precinct 5, there are things you can do to help prevent yourself from becoming a victim.
Don’t Be a Victim
Never leave shopping bags or packages in plain sight inside your parked car. Place them in your trunk and do so before arriving in your parking spot.
Be aware of your surroundings when shopping, both inside and outside of the store or mall. Look around and be aware of any suspicious people who appear to be watching or following you.
Put your phone away when walking to your car. Take notice of your surroundings and those people in your near vicinity.
Do not leave your purse in your shopping cart at any time. It only takes a second or two for a thief to steal a purse when you are momentarily distracted.
We recommend avoiding shopping alone when possible. Ask a friend or family member to shop with you. Shopping in pairs is a deterrent to criminals.
Park in a well-lighted area when possible, close to the store entrance if feasible.
If you are grocery shopping alone, ask a store employee to walk you out to your car.
If you have a large number of shopping bags, consider making a trip home to drop them off before making your next shopping trip.
After entering your vehicle, lock the doors immediately. Do not leave windows down or even slightly cracked when shopping.
If you are victim, notify authorities and the store you were at immediately.