Criminals don’t take time off during the holidays, and these stories are a scary reminder that law-abiding citizens need to remain diligent, year ’round, 24/7. In Florida on Christmas morning a couple was awakened by at least one home invader who stuffed them into a closet, ransacked the place for an hour before setting it on fire and then escaped in their car. Thankfully they made it out and survived the flames, although the perpetrator is still at large. Hopefully the culprit is caught before more innocent victims are targeted.
Early on the morning of Christmas Eve a man authorities claim was a gang member was shot and killed during a North Carolina home invasion. His accomplices escaped unharmed and have yet to be located. And a criminal released from prison nearly a week before Christmas was killed while invading a home in Cleveland, OH.
Thankfully, all of the victims in the cases above survived the ordeals, although the mental anguish they’re undoubtedly suffering makes the stories anything but happy. I’ve spared you links to the vast majority of holiday incidents, because far more defenseless, innocent and law-abiding citizens were felled.
I hope everyone has a season filled with the warmth and love of family and friends. Smiles all around should rule your home. Bear in mind, though, criminals view the relaxed and temporarily open atmosphere as opportunity. They see those gifts still under the tree as portable plunder, and the incidents I mentioned make it obvious they don’t care who gets hurt during the heist.
Remaining diligent doesn’t need to dampen your spirits this time of year. Simply continue to identify who’s knocking at the door before opening. Secure the windows, lock up, light the place and don’t hesitate reporting anything suspicious. Law enforcement is still on duty, protecting and serving, even while the rest of us are inside and celebrating.