Wednesday, November 24

Back to Church to Rob Again and Again

"A spate of church burglaries in suburban Oregon and another in San Francisco has prompted tightened security around houses of worship, including ramped up patrols and high tech surveillance equipment. The extra measures resulted in the arrest of a suspect in six church robberies in Springfield, Oregon, a town neighboring Eugene...."

Tuesday, November 23

Crime Stoppers: Two Church Break-ins

Lynchburg, VA - In this week's Crime Stoppers report, Lynchburg Police need your help finding whoever broke into two churches early Tuesday morning.

They say sometime between 2:00 – 3:00 a.m. the front glass door was damaged at the Church of Prophecy on Garfield Avenue.

No items have been reported missing.

There were several items taken from the Change Me Ministries and Fellowship Church on Fort Avenue.

The pastor discovered damage to the front glass door Tuesday morning.

The suspects stole a stereo system and keyboard, as well as some clothing.

If you have any information, call or text Crime Stoppers at 888-798-5900 or text CVCS and your message to 274637.

Saturday, November 13

Thief Steals Cash from Woman's Purse in Church

COOKEVILLE -- "A thief stole cash out of a purse in a church last Wednesday night, police said.

It happened at Collegeside Church of Christ on East 9th St. between 7:50 p.m. and 8:10 p.m., says a report by Cookeville Police Officer Brian Long.

The victim told the officer she was waiting in a church hallway near the gym for a family member. She placed her purse on a table and turned away for a short time talking to other church members. When she returned to get her purse, it was gone."

Click to Read More from the Herald Citizen

The above article represents one of my pet peeve's in relation to church security. I can not count how many times I have observed someone walk into church and place their purse or bag down on a chair or table and then just walk away. The above article states that the person just "turned around"; however, more times then not people will walk away from their belongings. 

The church setting can provide a false sense of security for some. Thieves know and understand this and will look these settings to take advantage of. Some thieves may make it a regular practice to attend a church to learn how they function and then when the time is right strike. 

My recommendation would be to make it your churches policy that members do not leave items unattended. This is for their own security and yours as well. You never know what is in that back and you would not want someone to place something like a bomb inside of one and just walk away. Similarly you would not want someone to leave their purse or bag and have a predator steal money, credit cards, cell phones, laptops, or any other item of value. 

Friday, November 12

Thursday: Late Night Church Fire in Memphis

"Memphis firefighters battled a two-alarm fire Thursday night at Divine Temple Church, 4360 S. Third.

Flames were shooting out the top of the one-story wooden structure at about 9:40 p.m. as firefighters sprayed water and appeared to be controlling the blaze, which was first reported at 8:51 p.m.

Memphis Fire Department spokesman Lt. Wayne Cooke said it appeared the church was empty when the fire broke out and no injuries had been reported. Cooke said the fire was almost contained just before 10 p.m."

Monday, November 8

Warning Signs of a Dangerous Letter or Package

Do you know the warning signs of a potentially dangerous letter or package? And what to do if you come across one? 

According to a guide by the FBI - Click Here for FBI Guide Website
Information Below from the FBI:
First, be suspicious if you come across mail/packages with:

  • Protruding wires or strange odors
  • Excessive tape or string
  • Oily spots, discolorations, or crystallization on the wrapper
  • Excessive postage
  • Addressing mistakes and issues, including misspelled words, badly typed or written addresses, wrong titles with names, no return addresses, etc
Second, if you do see one or more of these tell-tale signs, you should:

  • Stop…don't handle the item
  • Isolate it immediately
  • Don't open, smell, or taste it
  • Activate your emergency plan and notify a supervisor

Saturday, November 6

Bomb Squad Called to Church

TEMPLE CITY, Calif.—Authorities say a report of a possible explosive device at a Temple City church turned out to be a box filled with BB guns and a fake grenade 

Click for Article 

Does your church have a plan for a suspicious package or letter?

Monday, November 1

Best Practices for Mail Center Security

In light on the recent CONFIRMED attempted terrorist attack on Houses of Worship within the United States of America, I encourage all of you to review your policy for handling mail and packages that are sent to your facility. Below is a clip from the United States Postal Service, along with a link for recommendations for "Best Practices for Mail Center Security"

"There are millions of businesses that use the mail. The vast majority of these have only 'one to a few' person(s) responsible for mail center-type operations. Of these millions of businesses, there are thousands of large, complex corporate mail center operations. The best practices listed below are a summary of well-developed mail center security procedures that can be used by any mail center.Procedures applicable primarily to large mail centers are identified as such, and in bold.

These recommendations come from businesses that use the mail and have been shared with the USPS for distribution to its customers. Since needs and resources are often different, every suggestion may not apply to all businesses. Mailers should determine which are appropriate for their company and conduct periodic security reviews of their operation to identify needed improvements. The list below contains general security concepts and a few specific examples of how to accomplish them."

Click for Link