Dear Neighbor,

Happy New Year to you and your family! I am writing to you today with a reminder about the need to remain vigilant against potential crime in our neighborhoods. While I am pleased to report that violent crime rates are down and property crime rates are flat in this area, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) has informed me that Mission Hills is currently experiencing an uncharacteristic spike in residential burglaries. These spikes have occurred in several distinct communities throughout the San Fernando Valley, and the LAPD is encouraging all residents to redouble their efforts to ensure their safety and the safety of their belongings and homes.

According to LAPD, these burglars typically knock on the front door or ring the doorbell of a home. When the burglars think no one is home, they enter through open doors or windows. Sometimes they force entry. To protect against burglary, residents are encouraged to keep their doors locked and windows secured at all times – whether home or away. Keeping our communities safe is a team effort, so we encourage you to pay attention to the homes of at least six neighbors, and ask your neighbors to do the same for you. Have a pad of paper and pen handy to write down suspicious activity, license plates, or descriptions of people.

If you see something, make sure to say something – residents who think something is not right should trust their instincts and call the LAPD to report any suspicious activity. Stay calm and be prepared to discuss details with the LAPD. For example: “we are having a burglary problem in the area, and there is a red truck that I don’t recognize driving slowly around the neighborhood;” or, “three young men are looking into yards as another one knocks on a door.” This information aids in the police investigation and helps protect you. If you want to report suspicious activity, you can call either the LAPD Mission Station (818-838-9800) or 9-1-1 if it is an emergency.

Remember, this is not the time to panic, but rather it is the time to act. As a community, we can ensure we are protected and criminals are brought to justice. Thank you for you time and attention to this matter. Please call my office or the Los Angeles Police Department with any questions or concerns. Best wishes for a safe New Year to you and your loved ones.

Yours truly,

Councilmember, District Seven