The Guardian Angels kicked off the Christmas shopping season by passing out safety tips in Columbia Heights.
The volunteers, who help patrol the District, distributed these tips:
- Put the iPhone, iPad away. Not only do you become distracted by working, talking or texting on them, you also become a potential victim.
- Do not pull your wallet out in public even if you are going to give a holiday donation. Most organizations have a website so you can donate from your home computer.
- Do not do all your shopping in one day. If you’re carrying several bags at a time, you will not be able to defend yourself nor will you be able to get away fast.
- If you have expensive items, ask the store to have an employee escort you to your car.
- Do not carry large amount of cash.
- Keep all your credit card and phone information at home in case you are robbed. You can call immediately and have everything turned off.
- Do not let strangers help you with your bags.
- Park in a well-lit area close to the entrance if possible.
- If you are robbed, call the police from a safe place. Give a good description: facial hair, scars, missing teeth, tattoos, and jewelry. Look for foot wear; most people can change top layers of clothing but do not change foot wear.
The Guardian Angels said they will be escorting people from stores to cars, and they also plan to focus on Metro subway stations with heavy traffic.