News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


Subject :

Palo Alto Police to Hold Community Meeting About Burglary Trend
Contact : Lieutenant Zach Perron, Police Department    650-329-2413
March 22, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Palo Alto, CA --
 The Palo Alto Police Department will be holding a community meeting to discuss the recent daytime residential burglary trend.

The meeting will take place on Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 7 PM
in the multi-purpose room of Walter Hays Elementary School at 1525
Middlefield Road in Palo Alto.

Topics of discussion will include factual information about the crime trend (including a breakdown of statistics on where, when, and how the burglaries are occurring) and the many recent arrests, a list of the Department's actions taken thus far to combat the crime trend, information about what constitutes suspicious activity and how to report that activity to the police, and burglary prevention tips. The Palo Alto Police Department’s website has a section on crime prevention tips. It can be accessed at

The meeting is the kick-off event for the Department’s "Lock It or Lose It!" public education campaign, which was officially launched earlier this week. The campaign is designed to focus the public’s attention on how best to prevent burglaries, how to recognize suspicious behavior, and how best to report that suspicious behavior to police. As recent cases have shown, a partnership between alert residents and the police is one of the most effective ways to combat the burglary problem.

The main message behind the “Lock It or Lose It!” campaign is that residents should always lock their property when it is not occupied. In 2011, the point of entry in 36% of the residential burglaries was through open or unlocked doors or windows. The point of entry in another 28% of the cases could not be determined, but it is likely that doors or windows were left unsecured. In only 36% of the cases did the burglars have to use force (bodily force, a cutting tool, a pry tool, or a window smash) to gain entry.

“We understand the community is concerned about the spike in daytime residential burglaries,” said Lieutenant Zach Perron. “We share that concern. Burglary prevention and burglar apprehension are our top priorities right now, and we’re doing our very best at it. But we really need the public’s help to be our eyes and ears out there. We encourage people to come to the meeting to learn more about what they can do to help.”

Residents are encouraged to call 9-1-1 to report suspicious behavior, and allow the police to investigate if that behavior is innocent or criminal. It is always better to call and let the police do their job, rather than rationalize suspicious behavior and not call. Anyone having information about our current burglary trend can contact our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.