(From Master Deputy Sheriff, Amanda Lee)

Hello Everyone! This is for the period of April 15-21st.

We only had to incidents happen in the outbound area, but I need to go over two incidents (trends) that are happening in the outbound area.

One MVT (motor vehicle theft- someone stole a car) at a business off Dutch Fork Road. (this vehicle was recovered)

One Home Burglary in the Harbison Area.

Please take note that we had a few home burglaries in the harbison area a few emails back. Please keep your eyes open to anything the is suspicious in this area. We are finding that the suspect(s) are possibly using the pathways/bike paths during the day time when people are at work, school, or running morning errands. The hours are between 9am and 4pm. If you see or notice anything suspicious, please call 911 immediately to report what is going on.

Another home burglary trend, is in the Shady Grove Road area, Ashford area, West Shady Grove area. This is the same trend that was put out a few weeks ago. We had reports come in the a unknown person is going in behind residences and gaining entry into the homes through the rear of the houses. Please take note that we had the same situation before when I put out the alert about the men in the green van. I don’t want you to only be aware of the van, because criminals normally change vehicles to make it more difficult to ID, so keep an eye out for anything suspicious. Please call 911 immediately if you notice anything suspicious.

Some ask…..What is suspicious??

That is a good question….

Here is the definition of Suspicious:

“tending to cause or excite suspicion. Questionable. Inclined to suspect evil, distrust. Full of or feeling suspicion. Expressing or indicate suspicion: a suspicious glance. ”

Suspicion= “the act of feeling like something is wrong or evil.”

Basically, something/anything that could cause you to think, “well that is out of the ordinary or not right”.

Some cases that would be “Suspicious”:

*a strange person walking behind someones home or in their yard
*someone peering into someones windows or glass doors
*a strange car parked in an odd place (down a access road, power line, closed business)
*a person coming to your door with an odd statement or question. (possibly trying to scam you or gain access to your home)
*a group of people or person walking around the community without a purpose
*someone out after hours walking the neighborhood (IE: 10pm-5am)
*someone looking into vehicles or checking if the doors are locked
*the sound of breaking glass
*a vehicle circling the community or parking in an area but the occupants remain in the vehicle
*a strange car at a neighbors home and someone is loading things into the vehicle (IE: a moving van without indicators that the home was for sale or a vehicle parked in the driveway and someone loading items into it)

When you notice anything suspicious please attempt to safely gather as much information that you can, like:

*What is the person wearing (jeans, jacket, shirt, shoes, pants, skirt, hat)
*What are they driving (Truck/SUV/Van/Car)
*What type of vehicle (model or just two door/four door)
*Color of the vehicle
*Tag Number and the State
*How many people did you notice
*What were their actions that made you feel like they are suspicious
*Was the suspects carrying anything (items, book bag, weapon)
*Time frame (they have been circulating the community for 20 minutes…or they have been sitting in their car for 35 minutes and have not gotten out)
*If they leave, what direction did they go (back towards the front entry way, back to the main road, back towards the interstate)

All this information is great when dealing with suspicious activity. This information, if we do not ID the person(s) that you are calling about, can be cross referenced with information obtained from other callers/crimes/witness and connect the dots to solve crime.

What you are telling dispatch and Law Enforcement could be helping us in solving a crime and getting these criminals off the street and out of your communities. Plus, you saying a strong message: That you are aware! You care! And you do not want these “bad people” in your communities!

If you do not wish to have contact with the officer at the time when you are calling in the suspicious activity, you can have them call you for more information. Just leave your name and telephone number and you can speak with someone if you wish to tell them what was going on or what happened. You can always have them stop by your home and speak with you face to face also.

If you go out of town:

Remember that Richland County Sheriff’s Department has Special Property Checks. This is free of charge and is very easy to do before you leave town on business or go on a trip. Call 576-3000 and tell the officer where you live, what the dates are for the check (Max 10 days), if you will be leaving any lights on or have timers, contact numbers and if someone will be stopping by in addition to our checks. We have the officers in that region drive by your home and check on them. We still recommend that you have family/friend/or trusted neighbor to keep an eye out while you are gone in addition to us!

Don’t forget to check out WWW.RCSD.NET and sign up for the email alerts and the sex offender registry emails. You can also read all about the upcoming events and classes that we are hosting for the public.

Thank you all so much for your hard work and dedication in fighting crime and staying alert and aware!

Take care and BE SAFE!

Master Deputy Sheriff Amanda Lee
Richland County Sheriff’s Department
Community Action Team (C.A.T.)


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