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Anchorage, AK 99501
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Juneau, AK 99801
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EMAIL: Gov. Sean Parnell
Senator Mark Begich,
EMAIL: Sen. Mark Begich
Congressman Don Young,
EMAIL: Rep. Don Young
Senator Lisa Murkowski,
September 9, 2011
Recent Crimes Highlight Need for Parking Lot Vigilance
I want to alert you to a disturbing criminal trend happening in the Anchorage area.
It has been reported there are increasing number of robberies where purses and handbags are snatched from individuals in parking lots. Recently, an acquaintance of mine was blindsided by a punch and her wallet was taken in broad daylight in a very busy parking lot. These crimes are happening in situations that normally
would be safe. This concerns me.
To make sure friends and neighbors are vigilant at all times, I have posted the following list of parking lot crime prevention tips which I hope you will read and bear in mind as you go about your daily business.
Arriving at the Parking Lot
- Have a plan rehearsed in your head of what you will do in the event of an attack.
- When possible wear shoes and clothing that will not hinder an escape. Sneakers are best and shoes with low heels are your second best. Keep a pair in
the car if you are going to be out on your way home from work. If you wear high heels and are pursued, kick them off and run barefoot.
- If you are unfamiliar with the parking lot, drive through it and check it first. If you don't feel safe, go elsewhere and wait for someone else to arrive.
- Be aware of your surroundings. Watch for suspicious people or activities.
- Park in highly visible, well lit areas. Avoid parking near shrubbery or the side of vans that have slide open doors. Back in to the space if possible. (Near the elevator, if possible in a parking garage).
- Always carefully note where you parked so you don't spend unnecessary time walking around a parking lot.
Returning to your vehicle
- Do not present yourself as an easy target. Try not to carry a lot of packages.
- Walk confidently and with a purpose and observe those around you. If you notice someone hanging around your car or acting suspiciously return to the store.
Assertive body language can help prevent an attack. Keep your head up.
- Have all of your attention and effort dedicated to your surroundings and walking to your vehicle.
- Turn off your cell phone, have your keys in your hand so you are not searching for them while you walk. Keep vehicle key separate from other keys. Attach a whistle with the vehicle key.
- Walk to your vehicle in pairs or in a group.
- As you approach your car, look under and around it. Before getting in your car look in the back seat and on the floor.
- When you enter your vehicle, lock all the doors and turn on your headlights. This will allow you to see anyone outside in the dark.
- Start the vehicle and drive to another location; that is well lit before making any necessary phone calls. Limit the amount of time you spend idle in the car.
- If you feel that you are being followed, walk or run quickly to a lighted store or where crowds of people can offer help if needed. Know where to go for help-police station, fire house, etc. Do not go home.
- Do anything you can to draw attention. Don't be embarrassed. Scream, yell or blow your whistle. Honk the car horn.
- If you carry a purse, don't dangle it by your side so that a thief can run by you and grab it. Carry your purse close to your body, preferably in front.
- Keep your car in good mechanical condition to prevent car trouble. Keep the tank filled with sufficient gas.
- Avoid carrying large sums of money and unnecessary credit cards. Consider keeping ten or fifteen dollars in your wallet or purse to throw to the ground to initiate an escape.
It is very upsetting that such crimes are taking place here in Anchorage, but it is my hope that with proper prevention we can help put a stop to them.
Thank for taking the time to read this update and help make our community safer.
I'm here for you, so please keep in touch on matters important to you and your family!
Alaska State Representative
District 29 – Anchorage
AVOID ROAD CONSTRUCTION DELAYS!
As the summer construction season comes to an end road crews will be busy wrapping up work throughout town. You may wish to plan your travel routes accordingly. Please take a moment to learn about potential traffic delays at the following website: http://muni.org/Departments/works/traffic/engineering/roads/Pages/Delays.aspx