September 30, 2022
Subject: Burglary Activity Alert and Burglary Prevention Information
Dear Atherton Resident:
Over the past several years we have been informing our residents about burglaries being committed in our town, and in surround communities by, South American organized crime tourism gangs. It is strongly suspected that these criminal gangs have returned to the area and are thought to have been responsible for recent burglaries in Hillsborough and in Los Altos Hills. The links below provide details on these recent burglaries:
The purpose of this burglary activity alert is to provide you, our resident partners, with information to assist you in helping reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of a burglary. One of the best things you can do to prevent a burglary is to make your house look like someone is home when you are away from your home. There are several additional steps you can take to help make your residence a harder target for burglars which include:
● Securing your valuables and do not keep them in your master bedroom.
● If you use a safe, do not keep it in your master bedroom and ensure it is hidden and bolted to the floor and/or wall.
● Utilize a security system and consider having the alarm directly connected to the Atherton Police Dispatch Center to reduce the police response time.
● When away from your home keep lights on inside and outside.
If you have never stepped back and looked at your residence from the perspective of a would-be criminal, you should take a moment and do so. Burglars look for vulnerabilities and opportunities. They look for an easy target, so making their job more difficult, or riskier, reduces the appeal to most criminals. Burglars will most often try for unlocked windows and doors as a means of entry. If you have windows and doors that create a challenge to burglars, they may move on to something easier. Burglars also want to remain unseen if possible. Lighting, landscaping, natural access control, and other concepts, are forms of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) that can make your home a harder target and one that will assist crime prevention and deterrence.
We have police staff trained in CPTED and we will come to your residence for a CPTED review. To arrange a visit, call our Dispatch Center at 650-688-6500, to set up an appointment. You can also call our dispatch center if you would like to have your alarm system directly connected to our dispatch center and monitored for no cost.
The Atherton Police Department’s crime prevention efforts are meant to strengthen the partnership between our residents and the community that we serve. But none of these ideas will help unless they are used properly. Failing to lock doors and windows or to turn on security lighting and alarms will represent a failure of the overall protection system for the home.
Now is the time to be on high alert and on the defense. We hope that together, we can enhance the quality of life in Atherton and make our great community as safe and secure as possible.
Steven D McCulley
Chief of Police