Lt. William Hernandez of the Cutler Bay Policing Unit spoke to members of the Cutler Bay Business Association about crime at their monthly meeting on Feb. 9.
“The good news is, crime is down in Cutler Bay,” Lt. Hernandez told them. “But you still need to take precautions.”
Hernandez attributed the crime reduction in the town to the higher ratio of police officers to residents than in other parts of the county, especially under budget cutbacks. But he stressed the importance of personal safety.
“Be careful when you’re shopping, especially in parking lots at the malls,” he said. “Know your surroundings; pay attention to what’s going on and don’t flash a lot of cash.” He reminded everyone of the usual precautions of avoiding shopping alone and leaving purchased items visible in vehicles while they return to do more shopping. He suggested placing things in the trunk or leaving them with the store cashier until shoppers are ready to leave to go home.
Hernandez advised not to open car windows on the road when panhandlers approach at traffic lights, and offered advice for business owners as well.
“In your business, you have to be careful,” he said. “Keep your door locked if you can, or keep an eye on who’s coming in. Don’t keep a lot of money in the store and don’t make your bank runs at the same time every day; vary your routine”
The lieutenant pointed out that security surveys by the police are available for businesses or homes, offered free of charge.
“Our neighborhood resource unit will sit down with you and evaluate your situation and help you take steps to prevent crime,” Hernandez said.
For a security survey in Cutler Bay, call 305-234-4237.