Friday, June 25, 2010
The recent “Dinner Set” burglars demonstrated the limitations associated with being dependent on other people and other things for safety. These thieves stole more than $2 million in high-end jewelry from homes throughout South Florida. At least six of these burglaries occurred in gated communities in Boca Raton. The suspects broke into houses where alarms were not set and in some of the cases, they entered through unlocked doors.
Gates, walls, guards, alarms and surveillance technology all have great deterrent value. I highly recommend these security measures. However, you have to take affirmative steps to safeguard yourself, your family, and your belongings.
Doors should be locked and alarms should be activated. You should always be alert for people and circumstances which appear to be suspicious. Additional residential security tips are available on our website (click here). If you call 561-347-3938, we will even come to your house for a free home security survey.
Even though we live in a safe community, everyone needs to be reasonably vigilant. Don’t outsource your safety.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
It is very frustrating, but the ongoing investigation will not allow me to give you the complete story, so here's a thumbnail sketch. Last week, at about 3:30 in the morning, Boca Raton Police Sgt. Shannon Wendlick was patrolling a neighborhood on the east side of the city when she encountered a suspicious vehicle. The vehicle pulled into a driveway and Sgt. Wendlick got out of her car to check it out. The driver attempted to run her down with a stolen vehicle and the front seat passenger pointed a gun at her. Sgt. Wendlick fired at the armed suspect, hitting him multiple times. The driver fled, but Sgt. Wendlick was able to take the front seat passenger and another suspect (located in the backseat) into custody. The driver fled the scene.
It turns out that these suspects equipped themselves with multiple firearms, a ski mask and 25 feet of rope so they could commit a home invasion robbery. Sgt. Wendlick took great risks to interrupt their plans and probably saved lives in the process.
It was encouraging to receive messages of support for Shannon and her colleagues from our residents. One resident wrote:
Big thanks to officer Shannon Wendlick for sensing there was something wrong with the stolen vehicle and it's inhabitants (I admire her courage and presence of mind in the midst of chaos). We are very fortunate to have such vigilant and dedicated law enforcement and certainly are grateful knowing you're out there fighting "the good fight" against criminals in the face of unspoken danger on a daily basis. Thank you for all the you do for our families and our community. Your job is a tough one and we are all lucky you get out there and do it, day after day on our behalf.
We want to thank you from the bottom of hearts for the amazing job that you did to protect our families in east Boca this week. We have two young children and cannot imagine the potential outcome that could have happened had you not been there and followed-through on your observations and instincts. We also cannot imagine what might have happened had you not put your life on the line to ensure our safety. We have all heard the stories of what could have happened during a home invasion and your intuition and bravery to follow-up is truly remarkable- we are praying for you and thanking God for you and what you did for all of us that
As this cases progresses, we will be able to talk more about what happened, but I wanted to give you a glimpse into why we enjoy and appreciate the support we receive in Boca Raton. Thank you.
Monday, June 7, 2010
With so many of our customers (victims and offenders) arriving from outside of our jurisdiction, we realize the importance of teaming up with other agencies to help keep Boca safe. I know that the "thinking outside the box" phrase has been overused, but it is so appropriate for describing how we have to expand our thinking well outside of our City limits.
This reality was well-illustrated when a resident mentioned to me that he was surprised to see other departments conducting traffic stops on I-95 in Boca Raton last weekend. This activity was part of the Dori Slosberg Foundation's Staying Alive On 95 & Florida's Roadways campaign. Several agencies in South Florida participated in this enforcement event and Boca Raton police officers wrote over 90 citations.
It is important for our residents to know that we actually leverage resources from other jurisdictions to accomplish our mission here in Boca Raton. In this post 9/11 environment, it is also important to note that our Department's philosophy is to establish and foster partnerships with other agencies to improve homeland and hometown security.
We are fortunate to have outstanding law enforcement resources in Boca Raton. However, the "Partnership" component of the VIPER strategy is not limited to our City. We are always looking beyond our borders. More to follow on this item soon.