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My Town: 7 tips to protect your home from spring break predators

My Town: 7 tips to protect your home from spring break predators

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—With spring break fast approaching, many West Michigan families are fine-tuning their travel plans—and so are thieves.

Most West Michigan schools will be out of session April 3-10, so families can take a vacation.  East Grand Rapids Public Safety Director Mark Herald says this is the time homeowners need to step up safety measures.  Herald shares seven ways to make your home less attractive to thieves:

My Town: West Michigan's safest and most dangerous places

My Town: West Michigan's safest and most dangerous places

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—West Michigan is home to one of the safest cities in Michigan, according to a new analysis by Value Penguin.

East Grand Rapids ranked fifth among midsize cities and 16th overall.  Value Penguin based its rankings on FBI crime statistics collected in 2013.  The group excluded towns with populations less than 5,000. Value Penguin then compared crimes in the remaining cities per capita, giving more weight to violent crimes than property crimes. 

The West Michigan communities that came in above the state average for crimes included Spring Lake-Ferrysburg (No. 28), Rockford (No. 45), Zeeland (No. 56), Belding (No. 80) and Grand Haven (No. 118).

My Town: 10 ways to protect yourself while shopping

My Town: 10 ways to protect yourself while shopping

KENTWOOD, Mich.—As the busiest shopping day of the year approaches, police are offering 10 ways to protect yourself and your vehicle from thieves.

 

Help Eliminate Auto Thefts (H.E.A.T.) works with Michigan law enforcement agencies to track down suspected car thieves and those suspected of auto theft-related insurance fraud.    Shoppers are encouraged to follow these tips:

My Town: West Michigan home to three of most dangerous Mich. places

My Town: West Michigan home to three of most dangerous Mich. places

MUSKEGON HEIGHTS, Mich.—West Michigan is home to three of the 10 most dangerous places in the state, according to Movoto Real Estate.

The company based its rankings on cities with populations of 10,000 or more that also ranked high in murder, violent crimes, property crimes and total crimes, based on the 2012 FBI Uniform Crime Report.  Flint topped the list, followed by Benton Harbor, Detroit, Highland Park, Muskegon Heights, Harper Woods, Inkster, Flint Township, Ypsilanti and Kalamazoo. Grand Rapids came in at No. 16, Holland ranked 26th,  Walker took 32nd place, Grandville ranked 41st, Norton Shores landed at No. 42, Kalamazoo Township was 45th and Grand Haven came in at No. 50 among the 102 qualified communities.  To see the entire list, visit Movoto’s website here.

My Town Holland: Police seek tips in gas station robbery

My Town Holland: Police seek tips in gas station robbery

HOLLAND, Mich,.--  Holland police officers are reviewing surveillance images in hopes of catching a gas station robber.

The crime happened shortly before 11 p.m. Thursday, May 29 at the Family Fare gas station convenience store, located at 1149 S. Washington.  The clerk says a man walked in, implied he had a weapon, and then demanded cash.  The man was last seen running west.  He was wearing tan shorts, white tennis shoes and a dark-colored hooded sweatshirt with a plaid pattern.  The clerk says the suspect was approximately 5’7” to 5’9” in height.

Police say the clerk had called management prior to calling 9-1-1, delaying their response by approximately 15 minutes. Nonetheless, officers tried to track the robber using a K-9, but the police dog could not pick up the scent.

Anyone with information in this case is urged to contact the Holland Department of Public Safety at (616) 355-1100.

Communities celebrate National Night Out August 6

Communities celebrate National Night Out August 6

National Night Out is August 6, providing community members a free and fun opportunity to meet neighbors and local police officers.

National Night Out started in1984 as a way to encourage the community to get involved in crime-prevention, sending a message to criminals that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.  Organizers often fold food and family-friendly activities into the event.  This year’s participating communities include:

Kalamazoo County

·         Kalamazoo: Arcadia Neighborhood Assoc., Arcadia School, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

·         Kalamazoo: Eastside Neighborhood Assoc., Rockwell Park, 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.

·         Kalamazoo: Edison Neighborhood Assoc., 816 Washington, 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Ottawa County Sheriff's Department recruiting Citizen Police Academy

Ottawa County Sheriff's Department recruiting Citizen Police Academy

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department is recruiting for its 2013 Citizen Police Academy.

The program is meant to raise awareness about the sheriff’s office role in the community.  Classes will address undercover drug investigations, firearms, the criminal justice legal system, accident investigations, community policing, and the duties of each agency within the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department.

The Citizen Police Academy will run September 10 to December 11.  Classes will take place 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays at the Fillmore complex, located at 12220 Fillmore St.  For more information or to apply, call Sgt. Valerie Weiss at (616) 738-4622 or click here.