Follow home robberies are on the rise in parts of Los Angeles.
A follow-home robbery is a crime in which thieves target victims who are seen in public.
The victims are often followed to their house from a restaurant. They are targeted because of their expensive jewelry or high-end cars.
According to the LAPD, they are investigating 110 robberies of this type, and it’s believed there are at least six different street-level gangs involved in the crimes.
But it’s not just L.A., these types of street-level crime are increasing in many parts of the country.
Recently, an unidentified man was followed to his house at 3 a.m. one morning.
The victim had been at a high-end restaurant earlier in the evening, and after following him home, two men robbed the victim of cash and other valuables.
When the thugs robbed him, they were wearing windbreaker jackets that said “police” on the back. Thankfully, the victim wasn’t hurt during the robbery.
These types of robberies happen very quickly.
In many cases, the suspects approach victims and pat them down for any valuables.
Some of these robberies even occurred during broad daylight.
In one case, a woman was followed to her house while pushing her baby in a stroller.
In another case, criminals followed a man from a jewelry store.
They knocked on his door and pretended to be employees of a landscape company. Then they robbed him.
Because of the increase of follow home robberies, the LAPD announced a “Follow Home Task Force.”
This is a group of 20 detectives from the robbery-homicide division that are working to solve these crimes.
In the majority of cases the suspects follow the victims’ home or to an isolated parking lot, then they confront and rob them.
In many of the robberies, the suspects have targeted expensive jewelry including watches and necklaces, as well as expensive purses.
But the biggest thing these crimes have in common is the vehicles driven by the victims were expensive.
These days street-level criminals are more brazen. They are committing violent crimes in broad daylight.
That’s because many police departments around the country are understaffed, and they can’t be everywhere these dirtbags commit their crimes.
Since police are overworked and underpaid, I don’t see this crime trend ending anytime soon.
In some cities, stores like Walgreens and Target close at 5 p.m. because too many thefts occur in the evening.
This is the state of crime in our country.
With that being said, here are a few things you can do to protect yourself from becoming a victim of a follow-home robbery.
Everyone enjoys going to a nice dinner or shopping at a nice store. But just because you splurge for a fancy meal it doesn’t mean that you’re loaded with cash.
However, criminals assume someone that is spending hundreds on a nice meal has valuables to steal.
So, if you go to these places, don’t make it a big deal.
If you wear nice jewelry to a restaurant, consider taking it off and putting it in your pocket as you walk out.
If your spouse wears a ring worth tens of thousands of dollars, leave it somewhere safe when you are going out.
Again, the goal is to not draw attention or appear that you are oozing money.
Don’t get out of your car:
Many victims of these robberies are followed in their cars, so when you get home stop and wait a second before pulling into your driveway or garage.
Look around to see if another car is stopping and waiting.
If you park in a parking spot, don’t get out of your car without waiting and looking around.
If you see someone suspicious, keep driving and see if they follow.
When you arrive home and drive into your garage, it can be easy for a criminal to follow you.
Consider backing your car into your garage to give you a better view of someone approaching.
In one case in LA, a jewelry store employee was followed home after work.
The criminals assumed that a jewelry store employee would have valuable jewelry.
When leaving work, be vigilant and cautious of people waiting outside – especially if you are in a career where you deal with strangers all day long.
For instance, if you work in the food industry, criminals might think you are leaving work with hundreds of dollars in tips.
If you see someone suspicious as you are leaving, walk back into your work.
Have someone walk with you to your vehicle, and have them watch to see if the suspicious person or car follows you.
Most of these criminals committing these crimes are street-level criminals, so they are willing to do these crimes for little reward.
So, if you happen to be the victim of a follow home crime, and all they are after is a few hundred bucks or your watch, then give it to them.
It’s not worth dying over.
But, if you believe your life is in danger then do anything you can to survive.
As these types of crimes continue to rise, use these tips to stay safe.