Cobb County Police Department
THE PENS DISPATCH
From the Criminal Investigations Unit at PCT IV Police Email Notification System
Welcome to the November edition of THE PENS DISPATCH. This bulletin is brought to you from the Precinct IV Criminal Investigations Unit and is designed to keep you aware of crime trends in your area and tips on measures you can take to keep you and your family safe.
Public Safety Topic of the Month
What You and Your Neighbors Can Do
Links To Resources
PUBLIC SAFETY TOPIC OF THE MONTH
Cyber Safety Awareness
As the winter holidays approach, Pct 4 PENS would like to remind everyone to stay aware of seasonal scams and cyber campaigns, which may include:
•electronic greeting cards that may contain malware
•requests for charitable contributions that may be phishing scams and may originate from illegitimate sources claiming to be charities
•screensavers or other forms of media that may contain malware
•credit card applications that may be phishing scams or identity theft attempts
•online shopping advertisements that may be phishing scams or identity theft attempts from bogus retailers
•shipping notifications that may be phishing scams or may contain malware
We encourages you to use caution when encountering these types of email messages and take the following preventative measures to protect yourselves from phishing scams and malware campaigns:
•Do not follow unsolicited web links in email messages.
•Use caution when opening email attachments.
•Maintain up-to-date antivirus software.
•Review the Federal Trade Commission's Charity Checklist.
•Verify charity authenticity through a trusted contact number. Trusted contact information can be found on the Better Business Bureau's National Charity Report Index.
•At your workplaces be suspicious of unsolicited phone calls, visits, or email messages from individuals asking about employees or other internal information. If an unknown individual claims to be from a legitimate organization, try to verify his or her identity directly with the company.
Holiday Traveling with Personal Internet-Enabled Devices Cyber Security Tip on protecting personal mobile devices while traveling over the holidays
•Do not use public Wi-Fi networks
•Avoid using open Wi-Fi networks to conduct personal business, bank, or shop online. Open Wi-Fi networks at places such as airports, coffee shops, and other public locations present an opportunity for attackers to intercept sensitive information that you would provide to complete an online transaction.
•If you simply must check your bank balance or make an online purchase while you are traveling, turn off your device's Wi-Fi connection and use your mobile device's cellular data internet connection instead of making the transaction over an unsecure Wi-Fi network.
•Turn off Bluetooth when not in use
•Bluetooth-enabled accessories can be helpful, such as earpieces for hands-free talking and external keyboards for ease of typing. When these devices are not in use, turn off the Bluetooth setting on your phone. Cyber criminals have the capability to pair with your phone's open Bluetooth connection when you are not using it and steal personal information.
Stolen Autos: Stolen autos went up from the previous month with a total of 12 for October. There had been 5 in September.
Entering Autos: Entering Autos were down from the previous month (Sept had 43) with a total of 37 in October. Beat 415 had the highest with 10 followed by beat 414 with 9.
In November there has been a rash of thefts involving lawn care equipment such as leaf blowers from the trailers of lawn care companies. We do have some leads that we are following up on but need your assistance in the subdivisions off Oak Lane and Chimney Springs subdivision in identifying a newer grey Honda Accord with tinted windows and a loud muffler occupied by two young black males.
Residential Burglaries: Residential burglaries totaled 24 in October and were down from 41 in Sept. Beat 416 had the highest number with 8. Six of those occurred in apartment complexes such as Barrington Mill Apartments.
In August a PENS Alert was sent out to the 417 Beat areas advising of recent burglaries and target hardening solutions. Cases were assigned and suspicious vehicles have been noted with BOLOs provided to uniform patrol. In September, Beat 417 went down from 6 residential burglaries to 4. In October, Beat 417 only had one residential burglary.
Continuing to go down due to “Target Hardening” solutions.
Business Burglaries: Business burglaries were down from the 7 in September with a total of 6 in October. There had been 5 in August. Beat 416 had the highest with 4.
WHAT YOU, YOUR FAMILY, AND YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD CAN DO
If you see the gray Honda with tinted windows and a loud muffler driving in neighborhoods call 911.
Apartment communities are high traffic areas where at any given time people can be seen walking around. If you see someone loitering or acting suspicious who may be involved in criminal activity do not hesitate to call 911 and have officers respond to check the situation. Your eyes and involvement, even anonymous, can help us make arrests and clear cases.
The same goes for our housing communities. We need your eyes and willingness to report criminal activity.
Remember your Target Hardening tips:
• Lock doors and windows.
•Set the alarm every time you leave.
•Post alarm signs and stickers.
•Keep garage doors closed and locked.
•Do not advertise on Social Media sites when you are away!
•Use outdoor lighting on a timer.
•Limit potential losses by using a safety deposit box.
•If someone knocks on your door DO NOT IGNORE THEM, yell through the door that you are not interested and that they need to leave. Next call 911 and provide a description, ignoring them may result with your door getting kicked in!
•Record your serial numbers and photograph your valuables.
Possession of Heroin (VGCSA)
On Oct 23rd Pct 4 Evening Shift Officers responded to an anonymous call regarding a suspicious red Toyota Yaris with a tag covered in duct tape on Surrey Trl. The resulting investigation located drug paraphernalia and suspected heroin in the vehicle. The suspects were arrested and are under investigation by Crimes Against Persons Unit for the Robbery of the Big Liquor and Subway.
Entering Auto and Financial Transaction Card Theft
On 10/17/2013 The victim of an Entering Auto reported to the responding officer that a silver SUV had pulled into the parking lot and left minutes later. She then found that her vehicle had been forcibly entered and her purse was stolen. Using the description provided and knowledge of criminal behavior, Officer Fowler entered the Home Depot shopping center and located a suspicious vehicle matching the description occupied by a black male. Officer Fowler’s investigation allowed him to take charges on obstruction, interference with government property, and possession of burglary tools. Det. Goodman responded to the scene to investigate the entering auto. The credit card belonging to the original victim of the entering auto was found at the scene and further investigation led to the identity of a second subject, who was in the Home Depot during Officer Fowler’s investigation. After the investigation both subjects were charged with entering auto and financial transaction card theft.
Entering Auto and Burglary
On 09/11/2013 multiple reports of entering auto and/or burglary in a neighborhood off Childers Road in 412 beat were reported. In one case the victim was able to provide investigators with a serial number to a stolen laptop. As a result a Duluth PD Detective located that laptop while serving a search warrant on Peachtree Industrial Blvd. in Duluth GA. An admission was garnered from the suspect during the investigation by Duluth PD. CIU4 was notified of the recovery and interview of the offender. The resulting investigation established that the modus operandi to include the time frame and distance of the crimes resulted in charging the offender with 2 counts of Burglary and 3 counts of Entering Auto which cleared 4 open cases.
This concludes the November PENS Bulletin. Please continue to stay involved, stay vigilant, and help look out for your neighbors!
Sgt. Tim Nelson
LINKS TO HELPFUL RESOURCES
Cobb County Police Department
County Ordinance Violation pamphlet (revised April 2012)
Ladies and Gentlemen,
On Tuesday 09/24/2013 there were two Entering Autos (Car Break Ins) at East Valley Elementary on Lower Roswell Rd and one at East Side Elementary on Roswell Rd. At each incident the offender broke out a window and took the victim's purse that was left in open view as seen from the exterior of the vehicle. This occurred in the afternoon while picking up children from the schools.
There was no suspect seen to provide a lookout.
In addition we had a series of unlocked vehicles entered in apartment communities off Bentley Rd and Delk Rd overnight Sunday 09/22 and overnight Monday 09/23.
This is again a great reminder not to leave valuables in your vehicles when dropping off or picking up children at schools and daycare facilities.
When parking your vehicles overnight at home, make sure you lock your doors and remove your valuables. The next series could be in your neighborhood. Call 911 if you see any suspicious persons.
You may live in a "safe neighborhood" but you need to take these steps to keep it that way.
Be safe and remain vigilant,