BRONXVILLE, N.Y. -- Twenty years ago Bronxville resident Peg Cady gave the Bronxville Police Department a set of keys to her home so it would have them if there were an emergency. Then, as now, police urge residents to leave a set of keys at police headquarters and to notify them when heading out of town.
"We still like to be advised when you go away," Bronxville Police Chief Christopher Satriale told members of the League of Women Voters Tuesday at the Women's Club. "We are free eyes and ears to protect your home."
For Cady, the left set of keys paid off just a few weeks ago, when she was locked out of her house. Taking a chance, Cady called Bronxville Police, which maintains a key file for any residents who wish to participate. Sure enough, the set of keys Cady left decades ago were still there.
"The police drove the keys over to me, because I could not use my car," Cady said. "It changed a bad situation into a good one just like that."
Satriale visited the LWV to discuss his recommendations for keeping individual homes safe and how village police and residents can partner up to keep the village safe. Satriale explained that most crimes are burglaries where the thieves do not want a confrontation with anyone, but would rather grab valuables and run.
"Most burglars will come to the door and ring the bell and when you answer they will make something up and leave," Satriale said. "When that happens, call us, we want to hear from you."
Satriale said that a combination of alarm systems, technology and increased awareness has helped the village keep crime low and helped police catch burglars who do come to town.
"Last year we had five burglaries and we solved four of them," Satriale said. "Technology has improved our clearance rate and is making it more difficult to commit crimes and get away with it."
Satriale explained how cell phones can lock in and confirm a suspect's whereabouts at a given time. Satriale also said he is a big fan of alarm systems and outside lighting and an even bigger fan of people calling in when something seems a little suspicious.
"Call us," he said. "We don't mind, and we will be happy to investigate."
Satriale also encouraged the attendees to check identification when someone comes knocking on your door.
"Sometimes you get someone who comes to the door and tells you it's an emergency and they need you to show them where your meter is," he said. "When you go outside, a second burglar runs in and robs your home while you are distracted. Close your door and call us while you are outside."
Safety of items in cars is also something residents should pay attention to, Satriale said.
"We have big problems with cars, as people leave their cars unlocked and their valuables in plain sight," he said.
Satriale encouraged the club members to share the crime stopping tips with friends and neighbors.
"We are a family here in this village and we all look out for one another," Satriale said.
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