The Burlington Police Department is stepping up patrols to combat crimes that normally rise during the holiday season.
Burlington Police Chief Michael Kent has authorized extra patrol officers to help target and reduce incidents of retail theft and property crime at the Burlington Mall and areas surrounding the mall, a release states.
"These patrols were very successful last year," the department says in a release. "This collaborative effort between the Police Department and Mall Management will continue throughout the month of December."
Officers will be working in uniform and plain clothes, utilizing marked as well as unmarked vehicles, the release states. These officers will be taking a proactive approach during these patrols in handling reports of shoplifters, thefts, and property crimes being reported in and around the mall area. The preferred response to crimes occurring during these patrols will be to make an arrest whenever it is lawful to do so. Traffic Division Officers will augment these patrols with extra enforcement in the area.
According to the department, the purpose of this high visibility initiative is to have an impact on the reduction of crime, deter criminals from the area and maintain a safe environment for citizens. This strategy made a significant impact last year. Retail crime decreased by 28 percent, motor vehicle crashes and thefts from vehicles also decreased.
"The Burlington Police Department would like to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season," the release states.