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Numerous smash and grab crimes in city's downtown this month

GSPS advises downtown business owners to check up on their shops even if they're closed
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Since March 5, there have been 12 reported attempted break and enters or break and enters in the downtown core where a window has been smashed/door has been pried open in order to gain entry to the building. (File)

Since March 5, there have been 12 reported attempted break and enters or break and enters in the downtown core where a window has been smashed/door has been pried open in order to gain entry to the building.

The Break Enter and Robbery (BEAR) Unit has investigative leads that they are following up on. The BEAR Unit is actively investigating these matters and will be conducting focused patrols in the downtown core until the matter is resolved.

Although closed, business owners should check on their businesses regularly. Businesses that appear neglected can become targeted by thieves and vandals.

Tips for business owners shutting down for the next 14 days:

  • Do a thorough cleaning of windows and floors and log when it was done so that investigators will have a timeline to work with if a break-in happens
  • Remove all valuables from storefront displays
  • Remove all cash from tills and leave open with the cash tray out and visibly empty
  • Ensure alarm systems are working and all contact lists are up to date
  • Post on doors/windows that the premises are monitored by an alarm company and that no money is kept on the premises
  • Consider a surveillance system which can be monitored remotely by phone/online
  • Consider putting a laminate on all windows/glass to discourage and help prevent easy entry
  • Keep some lighting on inside to help with video surveillance and consider lighting on timers if possible
  • Ensure all doors and windows are locked and secure
  • Ensure all exterior lighting is functioning and on — consider motion sensor lights as another option
  • Remove anything on the exterior which could be used to gain entry to your premises (bricks, ladders, poles, construction materials)
  • Regularly check the building and keep track of when you check (have a log) but go at different times

If you know a business owner has experienced a break and enter to their business, they should call GSPS at 705-675-9171.

If you as a business owner notice vandalism to your business (i.e. broken window, pry marks on a door, etc.) this may have been an attempted break and enter. They are asked to please report it online by filing a Mischief to Property report.

If community members witness suspicious persons or activity around closed businesses, they are asked to please contact police at 705-675-9171 or Crime Stoppers at 705-222-TIPS.