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Preliminary 2009 crash facts for Child Passenger Safety Week (0)

Posted in Law Enforcement News September 14th, 2009 @ 9:53 am by Linda 

The Preliminary 2009 crash facts from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) revealed that none of the four children under age 7 who were killed in crashes were properly restrained. In addition, seven of the 10 children involved in crashes were seriously injured.

That is why DPS is encouraging all parents and caregivers to use correct booster seats for children. Minnesota does have a booster seat law that became effective July 1 of this year. This law states that a child cannot ride in a seat belt alone until they are 8 years old or reach 4 feet 9 inches tall — whichever comes first. DPS recommends keeping a child in a booster seat based on their height rather than their age.

Boosters are for children that have outgrown a forward-facing child seat. This means that a child can use a booster seat who is about 40 pounds and age 4. A booster seat lifts a child up so a seat belt fits properly. Poor seat belt fit can contribute to serious injury — such as internal decapitation — ejection and death in traffic crashes.

Parents and caregivers are encouraged to visit DPS’s website for materials including the “Buckle Up Kids” and “Don’t Skip a Step” brochures that provide detail on how to properly secure a child in a vehicle. Let’s keep our kids safe and secure while riding in a car.

IRS unreported-underreported income email scam (0)

Posted in Crime Prevention September 10th, 2009 @ 9:20 am by Linda 

There is an IRS unreported-underreported income email scam floating around the Internet. Don’t be fooled by this scam. Simply delete the email address.

Here is the content of the email:

Taxpayer ID: xxx-00000174073547US
Tax Type: INCOME TAX
Issue: Unreported/Underreported Income (Fraud Application)
Please review your tax statement on Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website (click on the link below): review tax statement for taxpayer id: XXX-00000174073547US Internal Revenue Service

This fake email notice allegedly from the IRS is about underreported income. At first, it looks like a legitimate IRS Notice called a CP2000, which would provide you with a legitimate contact at the IRS. However, it is nothing more than a phishing scam.

These low-life criminals are looking to get your IRS login ID and password to steal your identity. With this information, they can take out online cash loans in your name and run up a hefty bill for you to pay. In addition, they can change your tax filing to show that you are owed a tax refund. Of course, they will arrange for the tax refund to be sent to them, not you. You are responsible for any overpayment you receive from the IRS. And we all know, that the IRS are not forgiving people. They will aggressively go after you for the money.

The only way the IRS will contact you via email is if you contact them first. The IRS will never ask for personal information such as login ID, password, Social Security number etc, via email. Just as all the other phishing scams, such as the inheritance from someone in Nigeria, or a US soldier who “needs help” to bring some large amount of cash into the US, these are scammers just waiting to take your money and identity.

Bored teens arrested for criminal acts (0)

Posted in Misc Crime September 9th, 2009 @ 2:01 pm by Linda 

The Sun Newspapers recently announced that the Golden Valley Police arrested four teenagers in connection with a string of auto thefts. A 19 year old Brooklyn Park woman, a 15 year old Golden Valley male and two New Hope boys ages 15 and 16 were arrested The teens began their crime spree in early July and were stockpiling the items they stole in their bedrooms at home..

They stole items from unlocked cars in residential driveways in the northeast and northwest areas of the city. Most of the items were stolen between midnight and 5:00 a.m. The items are estimated to be worth thousands of dollars.

Some of the items stolen were golf clubs, skateboards, headphones, sunglasses, stereo speakers, keyboards, bat cuffs, a green rubber snake, a sombrero, men’s room and fire hydrant signs and a billfold. Purses, billfolds and cash that were stolen were not recovered. The police said some of the items were sold to friends. The items the police found weren’t pawned for cash because the teens didn’t know how to complete the crime.

Three of the juveniles were not your typical thugs. They go to school but when asked why they committed the crime, they responded that they were bored. However, three of the other juveniles, were involved in previous criminal damage to property incidents. These juveniles are likely to be charged with felonies in juvenile court. The adult female is likely to be charged with a gross misdemeanor.

Technology helps to solve crime (0)

Posted in Solving Crime September 8th, 2009 @ 10:06 am by Linda 

Who would have thought that a stolen iPhone could catch the thieves who stole it? Apparently, the latest technology for iPhones includes a GPS application where you can pinpoint the location of the phone if it’s ever lost or stolen.

A CMU student in Pittsburgh was mugged on the street by two men who flashed what looked like a gun. They demanded his wallet, PIN and iPhone. Thankfully, the muggers let the student go. However, his friend reminded him about the application on his iPhone. He got to work right away and started to track his iPhone. Within five minutes, he knew where the robbers were. He contacted the police and the criminals were apprehended.

The criminals will be charged with robbery as well as using stolen credit cards. Isn’t technology wonderful!

Do you own a vehicle that car thieves love to steal? (0)

Posted in Crime Prevention September 3rd, 2009 @ 10:19 am by Linda 

Did you know that a car is stolen every 26 seconds in the U.S. costing the American public nearly $7.6 billion each year? The National Insurance Crime Bureau’s (NICB) list of the most frequently stolen cars of 2008 has given us some idea of the most favorite type of cars that these criminals love to steal.

The 1995 Honda Civic is the top pick among car thieves. The 1991 Honda Accord, 1989 Toyota Camry and the 1997 Ford F-150 pickup truck are the next favorites. The only other domestic brands on the list were trucks such as the 1994 Chevrolet C/K 1500 and the 2004 Dodge Ram Pickup. Other favorites are the Acura Integra and Nissan Sentra.

As you can see, many of the vehicles are older cars. Car thieves target these older vehicles because they provide the best market for stolen vehicle parts. So if you car is stolen it is probably taken to chop shops where they completely dismantle the car and sell the parts on the black market.

The NICB encourages everyone to follow a “layered approach” for auto theft protection. This approach is simple and low-cost and makes these vehicles less attractive to thieves. The first layer is common sense. Lock your car; park it under a street light, etc. The next is use a warning device such as a car alarm. NICB also suggests that you use an immobilizing device such as a fuel cut-off or smart key that prevents the vehicle from being driven. The fourth layer consists of a tracking device allowing law enforcement officers to track and recover a vehicle if stolen.

The cost of some of these theft-detracting items may not be as expensive as you think. After all, a couple of hundred bucks to prevent your car from being stolen are better than tens of thousands of dollars it would take to replace it.

The bad economy hits state prison system in Colorado (0)

Posted in Misc Crime September 2nd, 2009 @ 1:45 pm by Linda 

Colorado officials recently announced that they will hold an early release program of 15 percent of inmates in its state prisons. Releasing these prisoners will help slash $320 million this year from the state budget. The program will release 3,500 of the 23,000 inmates over two years, saving the state about $45 million.

In addition, 2,600 parolees or 21 percent of those currently on parole will be released from intense supervision. Prisoners eligible for early release are those within six months of their mandatory release date. Parolees must have served at least half of their supervised term.

Thankfully, sex offenders do not qualify for this program but those who committed violent crimes will undergo a more rigorous review. The main goal of this program targets nonviolent offenders. Unfortunately, this program will put more of a heavier caseload on parole officers. In addition, because of the bad economy there will be more unemployment from this group of released prisoners.

It is very expensive to be on parole. Drug classes, drug screening and additional phone line if using an ankle bracelet on parolees, restitution, fines and fees add to the cost of paroling criminals. However, across the U.S. 23 states have slashed their prison budgets this year. Some of these states are spending money on reforms aimed at preventing repeat offenders.

Sex tourism charges face U.S. criminals traveling abroad (0)

Posted in Sex Offenders September 1st, 2009 @ 11:14 am by Linda 

Three previously convicted sex offenders will be the first to be charged under “Operation Twisted Traveler” program that targets U.S. criminals traveling to Cambodia to have sex with children. These low life criminals will be arrested and face sentences of up to 30 years for each alleged victim, if convicted.

Cambodia has been a hot tourist attraction for pedophile sex offenders who think that they can escape justice by victimizing children outside the U.S. However, Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) will find you, arrest you and you will face criminal charges in the U.S. ICE has stationed a full-time agent in Cambodia to focus on such cases.

Ronald Boyajian, Erik Peeters and Jack Sporich are expected to arrive in Los Angeles sometime this week. U.S. authorities will escort them. They were arrested in February by Cambodian police. The three suspects were named in separate criminal complaints filed in April and May related to child sexual exploitation.

These three men will be charged under the Protect Act, which became law in 2003. This act makes it easier for U.S. authorities to prosecute people for overseas sex crimes. ICE has made more than 70 arrests under the act in countries including Cambodia, Thailand and the Philippines.

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