TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Topeka Police Department is warning holiday shoppers criminals are also shopping this holiday season. The department has stepped up “high visibility patrols” in larger shopping areas, like Wanamaker, to discourage criminals.
Lt. Manuel Munoz said thieves will watch parking lots looking for opportunities to steal. He suggests shopping in groups and being aware of your surroundings.
“They are just waiting to see you get out of your vehicle,” Munoz said. “They are watching you get into the back of your SUV to put your gifts that you just bought, and/or your purse. So now they know that you’re going into that store and they have some time for them to go in there and retrieve those.”
Munoz said shoppers should leave as little in their car as possible. He said shoppers should trust their instincts and report any suspicious activity.
When shopping online, Munoz said you should keep track of your tracking number and try to have somebody at the house when the package arrives.
“Be prepared, have somebody there,” Munoz said. “If not, let your neighbor know that somebody is delivering something and see if they can pick it up for you and hold it until you get home.”
Munoz suggests having packages delivered to your work if you can’t be home. You can also have packages delivered to the store.