Intisar Faulkner, Ozarks News Brief

SPRINGFIELD – The holidays – a time to come together and be in good spirits. But with Santa’s gifts under the tree, burglars can be more prone to break into homes.

Tis the season for spreading good cheer, celebrating with loved ones, and giving back to those in need. But the jingle and jangle of the holidays, is also a prime time for theft.

Between Thanksgiving and New Years, crime and burglaries increase in many areas, Possibly due to the assumption of gifts and goodies inside homes.

“With the holiday shopping season, and people being out and about more often, shopping or doing any kind of activity whether it be a social event or family event, there’s going to be a lot more pedestrian traffic out there,” said Chris Laughlin with the Springfield Police Department.

According to a survey by KGW8 in Portland, Oregon, robbers look for certain things when choosing a house to break into. But, what are some tactics home owners can do to stop the grinch from stealing their Christmas?

Try turning on the TV, which gives the illusion that someone is home. Having your dog stand watch can be helpful to alert or startle an intruder. Turn on lights inside and outside your home. And, of course, lock all doors completely shut.

But here’s what you may find strange – keeping the blinds open.

“We want to have a natural eye that serves as a surveillance. Criminals feel that uneasy part, and so if you open up the blinds, your neighbors can maybe look over and see inside the house and say that’s not so and so that lives there; and maybe use their flashlight and see what’s going on,” explained Laughlin.