Reporting Suspicious Behavior
Police officers do well to remember that the average person rarely has personal contact with the police. They aren’t arrested, they aren’t stopped for traffic violations, they aren’t the victim of a crime, and they are rarely asked to step forward as a witness. While questioning a witness is routine for an officer, it’s far from the norm for most people that see a crime or a suspicious situation.
What has become a common phrase most often used in anti-terrorism and anti-violence (school and work place shootings specifically) is, “If you see something, say something.” The Police Department would like Village residents to take that adage to heart even in what may appear to be more mundane circumstances, and call police when they see something that appears suspicious.
What does suspicious behavior look like? It may include some of the following:
Some of these activities could be innocent—it’s important to consider the context of the situation. It's then up to law enforcement to determine whether the behavior warrants investigation. The Department encourages citizens to error on the side of caution and call police when they feel something is amiss. The result of such a call might be the prevention or clearance of a crime, but even if that doesn’t occur, it’s an opportunity for our officers to become better acquainted with our citizens.
The father of modern policing, Sir Robert Peel, said “The police are the public and the public are the police.” We have a safer Village when we work together.