OCEAN CITY – With winter setting in and many resort residents heading for warmer climates, the Ocean City Police Department is offering a residential security check program that will allow its offers to keep an eye on known vacant properties.
With many residences and businesses vacant for extended periods of time during the winter, resort police typically see a rash of burglaries, trespass cases and other crimes over the next several months. To that end, the OCPD this year is offering a residential security check program to help the department police vacant homes and businesses and, at the same time, provide absent owners with some piece of mind about their properties.
The residential security checks are part of a larger effort by the OCPD to “target harden” the community against crime. In addition to being a proactive crime prevention tool, residential security checks also promote police-citizen interaction and cooperation and encourage the sharing of vital information about the community, especially during the winter months.
The program allows residents and business owners to register their properties with the OCPD when they are going to be out of town for extended periods of time, or when the properties require special monitoring because of unique circumstances. For example, two years ago, the OCPD handled as many as 60 open burglary cases during the winter months in certain areas of town, most of which were later solved and the perpetrators brought to justice.
Under the residential security check program, property owners register their residences or businesses with the OCPD. As the police make their rounds and patrol the community during the winter, any observations or comments made about registered properties are entered in the department’s Computer Aided Dispatch, or CAD, system.
When a special watch period expires for a given property, the CAD system can then generate a detailed report that outlines the frequency of officer checks and any observations or unique circumstances experienced by OCPD officers for that particular address. More importantly, the residential security check system provides officers in the field with enough information to quickly contact owners about their properties in an emergency.
Residents and business owners can register for the security check program by going to www.ocpdmd.com and completing the on-line registration form, or by printing the registration form and mailing it the address listed. The program is being coordinated by the OCPD’s public affairs office. For more information, contact Pfc. Mike Levy at 410-723-6665, of PAS Jessica King at 410-520-5395.