Rossford police looking for vandals targeting several area homes

ROSSFORD, OH (Toledo News Now) - Rossford Police are lookingfor those responsible for several acts of vandalism in the Bruns, Arbor Hillsand Grassy Creek subdivisions.

Richard Baden's home was arecent target causing him to spend four hours cleaning up egg and broken glassaround his home this weekend.

"They egged it all around thewindow up there and then part of the garage and then they got Cindy next door,"said Baden. "Wednesday prior, they busted up four of my lights, littlelanterns."

BeverlyOlah lives in the area as well and she says she fears her home may be next.

"We'retrying to keep things locked up and under control the best we can," saidBeverly.

Beverlyalso says she hope her neighbors all keep an eye out for each other.

"Look throughthe yards as you're driving down, if you see something that's not normal callthe police and let them check it out," said Beverly.

Right now policearen't sure who is responsible for the vandalism but those targeted seem tothink its being done by kids.

"WhenI was a kid we did goofy things, but we never egged people's houses and thingslike that," said Baden.

The following is a list of tips from the Rossford Police on how to keep your home protected:

We ask that you 'night-owls' keep a look-outand contact the police if you see anything suspicious in your neighborhood. Weoffer these following tips for you to follow as well...

• Know Your Neighbors. The most importantprevention tip is getting to know your neighbors. You can do this informally orthrough a local "Neighborhood Watch" program organized by neighbors withassistance from the Rossford Police Department. Being familiar with yourneighbors helps you to know who should be around their home and who should not,and makes it easier for you to contact them and ask if someone should be thereor not.

• Good Lighting. Provide adequate lighting foryour home. Studies consistently show that good lighting discourages crime.While you don't need searchlights shining in your neighbor's bedroom window,adequate tasteful lighting discourages criminals who like to operate in thedark. Motion-activated lights provide the added benefit of reducing powerconsumption and add to the startle factor for those that activate them. Just becertain they are properly adjusted.

• Keep Landscaping Trimmed. Keep landscapingtrimmed so that no hiding or obscured areas are created. Bushes and trees canenhance your home's curb appeal, but they can also create a haven for criminalsdodging passing vehicles or police. Well-trimmed landscaping that is designedto work with your lighting will make your home less attractive to offenders.

• Keep Valuable Locked Away. What property areyou leaving outside and available to vandals and thieves? Are you leavinganything outside your home that is vulnerable? Your car or golf cart? Bicyclesor other valuable items? Do you need to clean out the garage so that the carcan be regularly stored in there? Remember anything left outside needs to haveextra steps taken to secure it.

• Take A Look At Your Home. Do your own homesecurity survey — take a step back and look at your home from the point of viewof a potential criminal. What is the easiest way to approach it undetected? Howwould you gain entry if you were a criminal? Which windows or doors are theeasiest to break into? Are there any hidden areas where an offender could lurkundetected? Once you have taken a critical look at your property take steps tocounter the shortcomings you have found. Can you change lighting orlandscaping? Do you need to improve locks? If you have doors or windows thataren't easily secured should you consider a home security system? If you havehidden areas that you or neighbors can't see into should you consider a basiccamera system?

• Report Suspicious Activity. Finally, if yousee something or someone suspicious have them checked out. If they are at aneighbors' home call that neighbor and see if they belong there. Most neighborswill welcome your concern. If that is not practical, then call the police. Beprepared to give the dispatcher a good description of the person or situationand why you think it is suspicious. Police officers would rather check out asuspicious situation that turns out be nothing, than to miss an opportunity tostop a major or mass crime event before it gets started.

Some people may install video camera andsurveillance systems on their property, but even a motion-sensor infrared deer- cam will work if properly mounted and angled. This will help identifysuspects.

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