Do you know what casing the neighborhood means? I didn’t until recently… when I witnessed it first hand. It is an uneasy feeling you get and I feel that I need to share this next post with you.
Apparently, when someone is casing your area, they are looking for patterns. When are people away from their home? Do they leave the lights on? Are they away on the weekends? If you look up “casing the neighborhood” in google, you will see a lot of articles regarding this.
It’s unfortunate that we can’t trust every honest looking kid selling things door to door, or that the man offering to wash your windows might actually just be looking in them, but the reality is, more and more often these can be the signs of someone casing your house. Casing a house is when someone studies and examines your house as close as possible, making note of who is home and when they are there, to plan a robbery. It makes your stomach turn even thinking about it, doesn’t it?
Generally, I feel like I want to help people that come to the door and appreciate the idea of them proactively looking for work, but criminals prey on this idea and know exactly what to look for, after all, this is their real job. A few minutes spent looking through your purse for a dollar or two, or a looking into your windows while washing them are vital moments a criminal needs to get the information necessary to plan a burglary.
The best tip, when a stranger comes to the door would be to not open it and voice through the door that you are not interested. Even door chains can be overpowered by a muscly intruder, and every second that door is open they can memorize what is inside your house, what type of lock you have, and this time of year… where your TV and Christmas tree is.
It isn’t out of line to ask a door to door salesman for a business card, a number to confirm their employment and the business they work for. If they can’t provide these things, trust your instincts. For us, I’m glad we did, turns out we were right.
A true business person wouldn’t mind a police officer verifying their identity, and it creates a record of the person that just spent a few minutes staring into your window just in case their intentions are dishonorable.
It might seem a little paranoid, but any officer of the law will confirm, your paranoia is founded in “case after case of casing” and they appreciate the help.
Be cautious, trust your instincts, get to know your neighbors, close your blinds when you leave, make sure alarms are set, motion lights are working and that your shrubs and bushes are kept and neatly trimmed, especially by your windows. Report any strange unfamiliar persons, especially those going door to door any time of day.