In the past week, there were reports on social media from residents whose homes were broken into. The Montreal Police Department (SPVM) has confirmed that these break-ins were isolated incidents. According to publicly available data, there were nine break-ins in March and four break-ins in in April.
The SPVM reports that it has not seen an increase in home break-ins in our city and says Côte Saint-Luc is one of the safest cities on the island. While this is reassuring at the macro level, it is understandable why residents would feel concerned, especially after reading about an incident. The best advice for all residents is to follow this advice from the SPVM.
- Make sure your outdoor exits are well lit. Avoid bushes, trees and fences that conceal your home; they could allow thieves to hide in them
- Get an automatic timer for lighting: it is inexpensive and easy to install
- Install a security system to alert your neighbors to the presence of intruders
- You can also contact your local police station to identify vulnerabilities in your home and what you can do about them. There is no charge for this service.
Côte Saint-Luc also has Public Security patrollers. While the main focus is on by-law enforcement, the City is in contact with the SPVM and we increase patrols in areas recommended by police.
Even with increased patrols we encourage residents get to know their neighbours because what reduces crime, generally, is what urbanist Jane Jacobs called “the eyes on the street.” When you know your neighbour, you will watch out for their house, too.
Like any other risk, you can reduce the risk of home break-ins by following the advice from police. There are many other more advanced actions you can take, such as installing security cameras, adding smart-lighting that turns on an off randomly your home to mimic someone at home, re-enforcing patio doors with anti-lift devices, adding dead-bolt locks to doors with door frames and hinges strong enough to resist being kicked. These measures add up and help deter crime.