Category: In the News!

Just another reminder because it still happens…..


Just another reminder because it still happens EVERY DAY…..

This morning our officers were dispatched to a vehicle theft. The victim left her car running in the driveway to warm up and she had her two kids in the back seat. According to a neighbor, a man in his 30’s walking by jumped in the car, backed it out of the driveway and started to drive off WITH THE TWO KIDS IN THE BACK SEAT. The suspect quickly realized there were kids in the car and luckily he abandoned the car down the street and ran off. The suspect soon found another car warming up in a driveway a few streets away and took that car which is still outstanding. This happens EVERY DAY, in EVERY CITY!

I know it’s cold in the mornings but a car with steam coming out the exhaust and no one inside is just what thieves look for. Thieves drive a stolen car for a day or two and then dump it for another one. They drive through neighborhoods in the morning looking for an easy car to steal. Doesn’t get much easier than finding a running car in the driveway or in front of a house. Sometimes it’s kids walking through a neighborhood and they find an easy ride to school. It happens EVERY DAY. I know people say “it won’t happen to me”. But keep doing this and I guarantee sooner or later it WILL happen to you. Purse or wallet in the car? Oooops. Laptop on the seat? Won’t be there when police find the car. Is the 4-5 minutes to have a warm interior worth the hour you lose calling the police and your insurance company? Maybe another hour or two renting a car? Not to mention what shape will your car be in when you get it back? Dented, scratched, cigarette burns in the seats, maybe trashed, might not ride or run as smooth as it used to. Maybe totaled. Oh Well…..

And the incident this morning with the kids left unattended in the car! Who leaves their kids unattended in a running car! Someone who thought “it won’t happen to me”. Luckily the thief didn’t want any part of kids being in the car. But what if he kept driving away? Could you imagine seeing your car drive away with your kids in the back seat? Then you call the police, we put out an Amber alert, put out a statewide BOLO for the car. What would have happened if an officer spotted the car and got into a chase with the suspect who wanted to avoid prison at any cost. Do you think he’s going to drive carefully cause kids are in the car? Nope, he’s going to drive as fast and as crazy as he can to get away. A major crash, innocent people hurt or killed including the kids in the back seat. Thank God that didn’t happen but the potential was there, simply because someone thought “it won’t happen to me”. Don’t people watch the news or read the papers? There’s been several high profile incidents involving cars being taken with kids in the back seat. And thieves don’t want to get caught in a stolen car so they rarely just pull over for the police, they usually engage in a dangerous high speed chase where officers and innocent people are endangered. And it usually ends up with tragic consequences. It’s like leaving a 4000 lb loaded gun laying around with a tragic accident just waiting to happen.    

The other morning I spotted steam coming from the exhaust of an unattended car warming up in a driveway. I waited until the owner came out of their house a few minutes later and told them they could have found their car missing when they came outside and they replied "this is a safe neighborhood, I just assume it will never happen to me".  A lot of people take chances sometimes because they feel “it won’t happen to me”. But eventually it will. You might have warmed up your unattended car 100 times without incident but the 101st time may not be so lucky. If I sound harsh it’s because this happens every day in every city during the cold and wet weather. There’s a huge increase in stolen vehicles in the wintertime from people warming up their unattended cars in the mornings. It doesn’t matter where you live, "safe neighborhood" or not, it can still happen. Thieves actually target "safe or nice neighborhoods" because they know people are careless and take chances. Then there are the people too lazy to turn off their cars at the convenience store. They go inside to buy cigarettes or beer and leave their car running in the parking lot, sometimes with kids in the car. At times I wish I could take their car and hide it for a few hours to get the point across.

I’m not one to say “I told you so” but it’s  frustrating knowing that people still do this  even after we constantly run stories about this. So if one of our readers writes in to tell us their car was stolen while it was warming up and now it’s wrecked after a police chase, don’t expect us to be very sympathetic. 

Just another reminder:

If you want to warm up your car, warm it up WITH YOU IN IT!

Cars heat up faster driving rather than idling, clear your windows and start driving slowly down the street. The car will heat up much faster. 

Never leave a car running unattended, sooner or later it WILL come up missing.

NEVER leave kids in an unattended car, running or not!

If you MUST warm up your car unattended, get a remote system installed where the car can be started with a key fob and if someone tries to take it without the key it dies.

Don’t leave keys, purses, wallets, laptops or other valuables in view in your car. Police waste a lot of time writing reports daily for crimes that could have been avoided.

Don’t take chances or you WILL become a victim of crime one day.

Lock it or Lose it!

Keep Safe,



Some postal customers are receiving bogus e-mails about a package delivery. The e-mails
contain a link that, when opened, installs a malicious virus that can steal personal information
from your PC.

The e-mails claim to be from the U.S. Postal Service and contain fraudulent information about an
attempted or intercepted package delivery. You are instructed to click on a link to find out when
you can expect your delivery. But Postal Inspectors warn:

Do not click on the link!

Like most viruses sent by e-mail, clicking on the link will activate a virus that can steal
information—such as your user name, password, and financial account information.

What to do? Simply delete the message without taking any further action. The Postal Inspection
Service is working hard to resolve the issue and shut down the malicious program.

If you have questions about a delivery or wish to report spam, please call 1-800-ASK-USPS.

Making a Point about Lasers Illegal Use of Devices a Serious Crime

Laser in Cockpit

What appears as a dot of light on the ground can illuminate an entire cockpit,
disorienting a pilot or causing temporary blindness. | Watch Video

Making a Point about Lasers

Illegal Use of Devices a Serious Crime


Justin Stouder was aiming a laser pointer at a distant tower from his suburban St. Louis yard one April evening in 2010 when a police helicopter appeared in his line of sight more than a mile away.

At the time, the 24-year-old had no idea that his decision to point the laser at the helicopter was a federal felony—or that the beam of light might have serious consequences for the pilot and his crew.

“It’s equivalent to a flash of a camera if you were in a pitch black car at night,” said St. Louis Metropolitan Police Officer Doug Reinholz, the pilot on patrol that night when Stouder’s green hand-held laser “painted” his cockpit. “It’s a temporary blinding to the pilot,” he said during a recent news conference highlighting the danger of lasers directed at airplanes and helicopters.

Interfering with the operation of an aircraft is a crime punishable by a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, and laser incidents are on the rise. Since the FBI and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) began keeping records of laser events in 2004, “there has been an exponential increase every year,” said Tim Childs from the Federal Air Marshal Service, who serves as a liaison officer with the Bureau on laser issues.

Watch law enforcement arrest a suspect with a laser pointer.

In 2009, there were 1,489 laser events logged with the FAA—that is, pilots reporting that their cockpits were illuminated by the devices. The following year, that figure had nearly doubled to 2,836, an average of more than seven incidents every day of the year. And the overwhelming number of the incidents involved green lasers—especially dangerous because the human eye is most susceptible to damage from the yellow-green light spectrum.

Hand-held lasers—about the size of fountain pens—are used legitimately by astronomy hobbyists and in industrial applications. Anyone can purchase one, and technology has made them inexpensive and more powerful. Lasers costing as little as $1 can have ranges of two miles—strong enough to target a variety of aircraft.

And what appears as a dot of light on the ground can illuminate an entire cockpit, disorienting a pilot or causing temporarily blindness. That’s because the farther the beam travels the more spread out it becomes. “At 500 feet,” Childs said, “that two-centimeter dot you see on your wall can be six feet wide.” To date, no aircraft have been lost as a result of laser incidents, he added, but there have been eye injuries, and perpetrators have gone to jail.

Those responsible for “lasering” aircraft fit two general profiles, Childs explained. “Consistently, it’s either minors with no criminal history or older men with criminal records.” The teens are usually curious or fall victim to peer pressure, Childs said. The older men simply have a reckless disregard for the safety of others. There are also intentional acts of laser pointing by human traffickers or drug runners seeking to thwart airborne surveillance, Childs added.

As for Justin Stouder, the helicopter pilot he lasered helped guide police to his house, where he was arrested minutes after the incident.

“I had no idea it illuminated the whole cockpit and blinded everybody inside,” Stouder said during the news conference. He offered a public apology and volunteered to tell his story in the hopes of educating the public about the dangers of laser pointing. “It was really a selfish mistake,” he said of his actions.

How Teens Smuggle Booze Under Your Nose


See how teens are fooling parents, teachers — even cops! And it’s so potent they’re getting drunk, sick and worse! The Defenders reveal the secret!