EDITORIAL: Personal safety is everyone's responsibility

Jun. 18, 2014 @ 05:00 AM

The hot days of summer clearly have not deterred the criminal element from wreaking havoc for many in the area.

Among the recent victims was the Sanford Municipal Golf Course, where about $10,000 worth of equipment was stolen or damaged. The Lee County Sheriff's Department report in Tuesday's Herald included numerous reported thefts, including firearms, cell phone, leaf blower, power washer, tool box, jewelry, DVDs, wrenches, flashlight, knives, a tablet, two TVs and a computer.

In addition, recent Sanford Police reports included various instances of larceny and related offenses.

This is not to say that crime is any more or less prevalent than in the past. What it does say, however, is that there are people in our midst who clearly have no compunction when it comes to theft.

It would be nice to think that crime would ebb with the arrival of warmer weather. Unfortunately, the onslaught of criminal activity is a reality we face — and by most accounts increases along with temperatures.

That said, it's wise to take extra precautions, like locking up valuable items so they are not as accessible in a break-in. Also, if possible, make sure to store outdoor items in a locked building.

If you have an alarm system, use it. If not, be sure to keep doors and windows locked when you're away from home.

We're grateful for our local law enforcement entities that work to "nip crime in the bud," — to use an expression from Deputy Barney Fife of "The Andy Griffith Show."

However, area residents should take the proper steps to keep these criminals at bay. And if they see suspicious activity, they should report it to the proper authorities.

Serving and protecting may be the perview of law enforcement, but it is incumbent upon all of us to do our part.