Fall 2018 District Newsletter
The slightly cooler temperatures tell us that the holiday season is fast approaching. Besides great weather, the next several months will bring us busier roads, bustling shops and an increase in outdoor activities in and around Scottsdale's beautiful parks and preserve. It is a wonderful time of year and your Police Department is committed to keeping you safe. In that effort, I wanted to provide you with some timely tips that can help reduce the chances of becoming a victim of a crime while out and about:
- When parking in public places such as parks, hiking trailheads and shopping centers, do not leave valuables in plain view. Always lock your car and try to park in an area close to where there is activity.
- Keep an eye on your belongings while shopping. Do not leave your cell phones, wallets and/or purses in shopping carts, dressing rooms or other places where they are not in your control.
- Be especially mindful of your valuables in crowded places. Close purses and/or keep wallets in your front pockets.
- If you see something that you feel is suspicious, do not hesitate to call the police. Let us investigate.
- Walk in well-lit, well-traveled areas. Let someone know where you are going and when you will return. Stay attentive to your surroundings.
Scottsdale enjoys a low crime rate; however, you should always stay vigilant. If you do become a victim of a crime, call the police immediately to report it. The men and women of the Scottsdale Police Department want you to have a safe and healthy holiday season. Drive with care, be mindful of your safety and enjoy our wonderful city.
Road rules - Do you remember what to do?
Signals are flashing red:
- STOP! Proceed when safe, observing right-of-way.
Signals are flashing yellow:
- Slow down, be alert, yield to traffic already in the intersection.
- STOP! Proceed when safe, observing right-of-way.
Four-way stops - Who goes first?
- When two vehicles on different roadways arrive at a four-way stop intersection at the same time, the vehicle on the left must yield to the vehicle on the right. Otherwise, yield to the vehicle that was at the intersection first.
Emergency vehicles with lights and siren activated:
- Must be given the right-of-way by moving to the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway.
- Vehicles in both directions must stop before reaching the school bus if the school bus is displaying a stop sign or alternately flashing lights.
GAIN celebrates 20 years
Many have probably heard of National Night Out, which is celebrated throughout the country every August. It is a time for people to come out of their homes and meet their neighbors for a block party. However, due to the high temperatures and potential for monsoon storms here in August, cities around the Valley decided to create their own party, which was named Getting Arizona Involved in Neighborhoods (GAIN). This year will be the 20th anniversary of GAIN night. It will take place on Saturday Oct.20 in neighborhoods throughout Scottsdale. Employees from various departments will be out visiting the parties, including members of City Council, the Police Department and Fire Department. Sanitation will even be out with the garbage trucks - always a huge hit at any GAIN party. To register your neighborhood, contact Jamie Petermann at 480-312-2835 or email her at email@example.com.
Free credit freezes
Recently, a new federal law was passed that prohibits credit reporting agencies from charging fees to put a credit freeze on consumer's credit reports. For those that do no know, a credit freeze, also known as a security freeze, restricts access to your credit report so that identity thieves cannot use your personal information to open a new credit account. Credit report companies could previously charge customers to freeze or unfreeze their credit reports. Since there are three major credit reporting agencies and a freeze must be placed with each company, these charges could really add up. This is no longer the case.
Once you put a freeze on your credit, you will receive a PIN code, which can be used to unfreeze your credit whenever you need to obtain new credit. It is best to check with your prospective lender to find out which of the three credit reporting agencies they use. This way you only need to unfreeze your credit report with that one credit reporting agency instead of all three. Once that is complete, you can once again freeze your credit.
The new federal law also allows parents to freeze the credit reports of children under 16 years of age. Unfortunately, it is common for identity thieves to open accounts in a child's name, knowing that it may be many years before the child ever applies for credit themselves and learns of the fraudulent activity.
Please note that a credit freeze does not prevent fraudulent activity on your current credit accounts. You should still look over your monthly statements and watch for any charges on these accounts that you did not authorize.
For more information about credit freezes and to place a credit freeze on your credit report, please visit the credit bureaus listed below:
Equifax: Equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services or call 800-685-1111.
Experian: Experian.com/help or call 888-397-3742.
Transunion: Transunion.com/credit-help or call 888-909-8872.
Avoid hurricane charity scams
Although monsoon season has come to an end in Arizona, we are continuously getting updates about communities that are impacted by hurricanes. It is second nature to want to help those affected by these hurricanes or any natural disaster. Unfortunately, scammers take advantage of these situations, posing as legitimate organizations attempting to get your money. If you are going to support natural disaster relief efforts through donations, verify where you are sending the money. Make sure the organization is reputable and the website you are using is legitimate. the Federal Trade Commission provides tips on "How to donate wisely and avoid charity scams."
Behind the Badge
In this edition of our Behind the Badge video, Chief Alan Rodbell and Community Liaison Chris Vassall discuss the requirements to be a civilian employee or a sworn police officer with the Scottsdale Police Department.
To watch previous episodes of Behind the Badge, just visit the SPD YouTube page.
"Shred It" events
Don't be a potential victim of identity theft. Protect your identity by attending a "Shred It" event. Bring your personal and/or commercial documents to be shredded from 7 to 10 a.m. on the day of the event at the Walmart parking lot, 15355 N. Northsight Blvd. Upcoming dates, all Saturdays, are Oct. 6, Nov. 3 and Dec. 8. Cost is $4 per box. All paper is shredded on site. These events are hosted by Police Officers of Scottsdale Association. A portion of the proceeds go to charities and individuals in need.
Electronics Recycling Collection Day
Recycle your old electronics equipment, including computers, TVs and phones. Our next electronics recycling event will be from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, and Saturday, Dec. 1, at the North Corp Yard, 9191 E. San Salvador Drive.
Find out all the items that can be recycled.