Common Crimes Associated with Business and Commercial Properties

Breaking and Entering
  • Often occur multiple times in a similar time period in multiple locations
  • Offenders are often apprehended after multiple break ins
  • Offenders are often locals who frequent immediate area
  • Physical building security, lighting and quality cameras help deter/solve these crimes
Vandalism and Graffiti
  • Can be graffiti or damage to property
  • Can be costly to the business owner
  • Dirty, damaged and unkempt properties can attract more crime
  • Take pictures and file police reports for graffiti, this can help in solving future and past crimes
Theft and Larceny
  • Provide good customer service face to face, criminals want to remain anonymous
    and interacting with them takes that way
  • Be mindful of not placing expensive or easy to grab merchandise near a doorway or open window, move things away from these area when the store is closed
  • Be vigilant of people and situations: baggy clothes or jackets when it is warm, or
    people walking around with empty bags
  • Share information of suspects with other businesses in the area and police
  • Sometimes occurs when suspect is stealing items
  • Can occur when employees are walking to and from business
  • Have good situational awareness: watch what is going on around you, walk in groups, look outside/inside your store before entering/leaving
  • Are in-frequent, dangerous and traumatic
  • Primary focus is to get them out of your business fast
  • Do not confront them, your stuff is replaceable, YOU are not
  • Observe and provided as much detail as possible

Steps to Prevent and Reduce Crime

  • Well lit areas deter offenders
  • Provides a sense of safety and security
  • Enables good line of sight for police and cameras
Doors Windows and Locks
  • Security film or bars for glass doors and windows
  • Deadbolts or multi lock deadbolts
  • Keypads are great, use metal ones installed properly, clean smooth touchpads often
  • Magnetic locks can be forced open, consider secondary locks
  • Utilize window locks, consider bars on windows in less visible areas
  • Reinforce doors and windows to reduce lag to make them harder to force open
  • A camera is only as good as its quality images
  • Consider placement and how lighting enhances or impedes them
  • Doorbell cameras can also be a good option
Alarm System
  • Offer many benefits and can be a deterrent
  • Keep your list of keyholders up to date with your alarm system to ensure efficient and comprehensive police assistance
    • Police can be limited in their response on scene if they are unable to get someone with a key to let them inside
Interior Prevention
  • Cash registers: remove all cash, leave open, leave illuminated
  • Safes: use a high quality safe properly secured in some manner to the actually building or ground
  • Merchandise: be conscious of what items your place where, keep high value items away from the entrance/exit, move items way from doors/windows when closed
Business Watch
  • Participate in or create a Business Watch to facilitate information sharing between businesses and police
    • This can aid in identifying offenders and sharing solutions
    • Meet on a regular basis to brainstorm problems, share information and discuss crime trends
    • Invite law enforcement to aid in the sharing of information and to help solve cases

For assistance with scheduling a security survey or any questions in regards to this information or the Trespass Authorization Form, please contact the APD Community Engagement Unit at

Share this story to...