Shop safe: Lock the car and leave the valuables at home

By: Sara Shookman Email
By: Sara Shookman Email

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- To shop safe on Black Friday, you've got to shop smart.

"It was exhausting but it was fun. We were in line for four hours just to check out," said Jennifer Ratledge, out shopping before the sun was up.

Early morning shoppers say safety isn't always much of a concern.

"Unfortunately I've never really thought about it," said Morgan Heape. "I mean there's lot of people. In the lines. Just go in a group. Make sure you have people with you."

Knoxville Police tell us there are easy ways to make sure you, your money and your gifts make it home safely. It starts before you leave your car.

"The ideal scenario is to leave just a completely empty car," said Sgt. Kelly Tanner with the Crime Prevention Unit. "Just something so innocuous that a thief passes by looks in and says there's nothing there."

That's not what we found while we walked the Target parking lot.

In just minutes, we eyed several cars that could catch a criminal's eye, even charging cords can do the trick. But bags, purses and wallets look a score just a window away.

Sgt. Kelly Tanner took us inside too. His tip: pair down a purse so you're less likely to set it down where it could disappear, like inside your cart.

And know you're being watched. Park close the building so you can walk out with a purpose.

Being aware means you're likely to go home lucky -- just know criminals are thinking the same thing.

"The more people you get, the more opportunities you have to be successful. It's just the law of averages," he said.

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