‘Tis the Season for Package Theft

holiday-package-theft-jpgIf you have ever ordered clothing, jewelry, gifts, or any other merchandise by phone, computer, or mail chances are those items were delivered straight to your home. Most deliveries DO NOT require a signature and are generally left at your front door even if no one is home to accept them. These packages, which quickly catch the eye of potential thieves, offer criminals that “Crime of Opportunity” they are looking for. Thieves looking to steal your packages will follow or watch for UPS, Fed Ex, US Mail, and other delivery service trucks so they can target your home after the parcels are delivered.

Below are some “Package Theft Prevention Tips” for you to use which will help reduce your chances of becoming a victim of this crime.

If Possible:

  • Ask for a tracking number. Most major shipping companies offer this service at no charge. This number allows you to track your packages and notifies you when they will be delivered.
  • Request a “Signature Delivery Option”. This requires a signature when the packages are delivered and ensures they will not be left at the front door
  • Request a specific drop off time and date when you will be home to accept your packages
  • Arrange to have your packages held at the shipping service so you can pick them up
  • Ask the delivery service to leave your packages at a side or back door. An enclosed porch where packages are out of sight is also a good option
  • Have your packages delivered to the home of a relative or neighbor who will be there to accept them
  • Ask a trustworthy neighbor to keep a “Watchful Eye” out for you packages. If they’re willing, ask them to safeguard your packages until you return home
  • If your packages do not arrive as scheduled contact the sender immediately

 

What Should You Do If You See Packages Being Stolen In Your Neighborhood?

  • Call Police.
  • Supply Police with an accurate description of the suspect(s) and any vehicles that may be used.

Happy Thanksgiving From the WFPD

Thanksgiving

The Wichita Falls Police Department would like to wish everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving and to remind everyone of a few safety tips to help make this time more enjoyable.

 

 

If you are traveling:

  • Please give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination.
  • Do not drive tired.  If you become drowsy, find a safe place to stop and take a break.
  • Always, wear your safety belt.
  • Be prepared to slow down.  The road conditions can quickly change due to weather or traffic congestion.

If you are shopping:

  • Always, be mindful of your surroundings.
  • Lock your car; Take your keys; Hide your belongings.
  • If you are shopping at night, try to park in well-lighted areas.
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
  • Keep a record of all your credit card numbers and contact your credit card company immediately if one is stolen.

At home:

  • If you are going to be gone for an extended period of time have a neighbor collect your mail.
  • Have various inside lights on multiple timers.
  • Ensure that all your doors and windows are locked and secured.
  • If someone knocks at your door that you do not know you Do Not have to answer it.

These are just a few simple crime prevention techniques that can help ensure that everyone has a safe and happy holiday season.

Halloween Safety Tips

halloween-safety-tips-header2It’s almost Halloween and that means kids will be out Trick-or-Treating.  Here are some safety tips to help make the night more enjoyable for everyone:

 alphabet letter s

Swords, knives, and other costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible.

alphabet letter a

Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.

alphabet letter f

Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.

alphabet letter e

Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats you eat.

alphabet letter h

Hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you. Always WALK and don’t run from house to house.

alphabet letter a

Always test make-up in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime to prevent possible skin and eye irritation.

alphabet letter l

Look both ways before crossing the street. Use established crosswalks wherever possible.

alphabet letter l

Lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.

alphabet letter o

Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible, or on the far edge of the road facing traffic to stay safe.

alphabet letter w

Wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.

alphabet letter e

Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.

alphabet letter e

Enter homes only if you’re with a trusted adult. Only visit well-lit houses. Never accept rides from strangers.

alphabet letter n

Never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

Halloween Safety: Sex Offender Compliance Check

halloween-safety

Throughout the year the Wichita Falls Police Department conducts a local sex offender compliance check to ensure all offenders are in compliance with their court orders.  This includes home visits.  The purpose of the check is to confirm that all registered sex offenders are in compliance with their court orders, to include residing at their reported address. There are currently 181 registered sex offenders inside the Wichita Falls city limits, all of which have been checked and are in compliance. Some of these offenders are currently on probation and the Probation Department performs their checks as well.

You can find a list of registered sex offenders in your neighborhood at http://bit.ly/1pZsjJG

Be safe this Halloween by planning your child’s route and knowing where they are at all times.

WFPD Halloween Safety Tips

halloween-safety-tips-header2

It’s almost Halloween and that means several kids will be out Trick-or-Treating.  Here are some safety tips to help make the night more enjoyable for everyone:

alphabet letter s

Swords, knives, and other costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible.

alphabet letter a

Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.

alphabet letter f

Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.

alphabet letter e

Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats you eat.

alphabet letter h

Hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you. Always WALK and don’t run from house to house.

alphabet letter a

Always test make-upExternal Web Site Icon in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime to prevent possible skin and eye irritation.

alphabet letter l

Look both ways before crossing the street. Use established crosswalks wherever possible.

alphabet letter l

Lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.External Web Site Icon

alphabet letter o

Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible, or on the far edge of the road facing traffic to stay safe.

alphabet letter w

Wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.

alphabet letter e

Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.

alphabet letter e

Enter homes only if you’re with a trusted adult. Only visit well-lit houses. Never accept rides from strangers.

alphabet letter n

Never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

Wichita Falls City Ordinances – Fireworks

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Here is a copy of the Wichita Falls City Ordinance regarding fireworks:

ARTICLE IV. – PYROTECHNICS

Sec. 50-93. – Definitions.

The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this article, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:

Pyrotechnics means and includes any combustible or explosive composition or any substance or combination of substances or article prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or an audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation, and includes Roman candles; sky rockets; helicopter-type rockets; cylindrical fountains, cone fountains; wheels; illuminating torches and colored fire in any form; sparklers and dip sticks; mines; shells; firecrackers; salutes; whistles without report; squibs; a fire balloon; a hydrogen-filled balloon; signal lights; blank cartridges; toy pistols, toy cannons, toy canes or toy guns in which explosives are used; torpedoes; dago bombs or other devices of like construction and any devices containing any explosive or flammable compound or any tablets or other devices containing any explosive substance. However, the term “pyrotechnics” does not include auto flares, paper caps containing not in excess of an average of 0.25 of a grain of explosive content per paper cap manufactured in accordance with the regulations for packing and shipping as provided therein and toy pistols, toy canes, toy guns or other devices for use of such caps, the sale and use of which shall be permitted.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(a); Code 2001, § 50-91)
Sec. 50-94. – Applicability.

(a)This article shall not apply to the possession or use of signaling devices for current daily consumption by railroads, the Police Department and Fire Department and others required to use them by law, nor to the possession, sale or use of normal stock of flashlight compositions by photographers or dealers in photographic supplies or for signal or ceremonial purposes or athletic or sports events or for the use by military organizations.

(b)This article shall be applicable within the corporate city limits and also within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending outside the city limits for a distance of 5,000 feet. Notwithstanding the prohibitions contained in this article, pyrotechnics warehouses and commercial wholesale pyrotechnics stores containing in size at least 1,500 square feet existing on the effective date of the ordinance from which this section is derived shall be authorized to continue operation for a period of ten years from date of annexation into the city. Upon the expiration of such ten-year period, such structures shall be utilized for a purpose consistent with the requirements of this article. Commercial wholesale pyrotechnics stores, as that term is used in this subsection, shall mean pyrotechnics stores that sell pyrotechnic devices to bona fide retail dealers and not to the general public.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(d), (j); Code 2001, § 50-92)
Sec. 50-95. – Using, keeping, storing, manufacturing or selling in city limits.

No person shall fire or explode or keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics in the corporate city limits.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(b); Code 2001, § 50-95)
Sec. 50-96. – Possession in city limits; identification of commercial vehicles.

(a)No person shall have in his possession in the corporate city limits any pyrotechnics. Subject to Texas Local Government Code § 342.013, any pyrotechnics so found in the possession of any person shall be condemned, seized, and confiscated by the Police Department or the fire marshal.

(b)Any commercial pyrotechnics dealer or operator, jobber, retailer, importer, or manufacturer transporting Class C fireworks within the city limits and extending for a distance outside of the city limits for a total of 5,000 feet must display on each vehicle the word “fireworks.” This may be permanently attached to the vehicle or on a sign. The word “fireworks” must be at least six inches in height and shall be visible on both sides and the rear of the vehicle.

(c)Prosecution for possession of fireworks pursuant to this article shall be subject to the affirmative defense established by Texas Local Government Code § 342.013.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(c); Code 2001, § 50-96)

State Law reference— Extraterritorial jurisdiction regarding nuisances, Texas Local Government Code § 217.001.
Sec. 50-97. – Permit for pyrotechnics display.

The state fire marshal may issue a written permit to a properly qualified person for giving a pyrotechnic display in accordance with Texas Government Code § 417.0041. It shall be the duty of the city fire marshal to make an investigation as to whether such a display as proposed shall be of such a character and so located that it may be hazardous to property or dangerous to any person, and he shall so advise the state fire marshal of his findings. All pyrotechnic displays must be permitted by the city Fire Marshal’s Office. A fee established by separate ordinance will be assessed for the permit. All displays will be supervised by the fire marshal.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(e); Code 2001, § 50-97)
Sec. 50-98. – Use, keeping, manufacturing or selling in extraterritorial jurisdiction.

(a)No person shall have, keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending for a distance outside of the city limits for a total of 50 feet. It shall be unlawful to do or perform any act in violation of this subsection within such area of 50 feet outside the city limits, provided that this subsection shall not apply within any portion of such 50-foot area which is contained within the territory of any other municipal corporation.

(b)No person shall use, fire, explode or cause to be used, fired or exploded any pyrotechnics within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending for a distance outside the city limits for a total of 50 feet. It shall be unlawful to do or perform any act in violation of this subsection within such area of 50 feet outside the city limits, provided that this subsection shall not apply within any portion of such 50-foot area which is contained within the territory of any other municipal corporation.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(f), (g); Code 2001, § 50-98)
Sec. 50-99. – Permit for keeping, manufacturing or selling in extraterritorial jurisdiction.

No person shall have, keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics within an area extending for a distance outside of the city limits from a distance of 50 feet to a distance of 5,000 feet from the city limits, unless such person shall have obtained a permit from the city fire marshal’s office. The application for such permit shall contain the specific location of the building used to keep, store, manufacture or sell the pyrotechnics and must also contain a blueprint or diagram showing the construction of such building. The construction of the building must comply with the rules and regulations of the city fire marshal’s office. A permit fee established by separate ordinance will be assessed per retail location.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(h); Code 2001, § 50-99)
Sec. 50-100. – Hours of closing for manufacturing or selling in extraterritorial jurisdiction.

All persons manufacturing or selling pyrotechnics within an area extending for a distance outside of the city limits from a distance of 50 feet to a distance of 5,000 feet from the city limits shall close their doors and places of business each night from 11:55 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. the following morning and shall not sell or manufacture any pyrotechnics during this time period.

(Code 1966, § 15-1(i); Code 2001, § 50-100)