Tips from law enforcement to stay safe while shopping this holiday season

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GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – We’re all busy this time of year, including local criminals and because the bad guys are looking for an opportunity, Upstate police say it’s important that we take a few extra steps to stay prepared.

A wave of purchased items creates more of an opportunity for thieves to steal.

Law-enforcement says where are you are doesn’t necessarily increase your risk of getting robbed or text, it really comes down to who are you with and how many eyeballs can see you.

Walking through a busy parking lots or stopping at a busy gas station are the best safety measures you can take, not just during the holiday season but anytime you’re out and about.

That’s good news for Alli Lupinacci, who makes sure she runs errands when she can see and be seen.

“I shop when there’s a lot of people around so it doesn’t really cross my mind.” holiday shopper, Alli Lupinacci said.

Women and the elderly can be vulnerable if they’re out at night or alone. Shopping in high traffic areas isn’t always full-proof, but law enforcement says daylight and crowds are usually a good deterrent.

“We always tell people if they can travel in pairs or in packs that’s great, that will deter potential robbers.” Lieutenant Ryan Flood, Greenville County Sheriff’s Office, Said.

Keeping gifts in a trunk and away from prying eyes, should keep shoppers from being a target when they return to their cars.

“Whenever there is something that is sticking out in Plainview it often times will entice someone to look into that car, break into that car or wait for the person who’s walking to that car,” Lt. Flood said.

Jeremy and Kat are ready to celebrate their first Christmas together as a married couple, while still keeping a watchful eye out for people who might want to do them harm.

“I usually do keep a little more aware I know that people are out there trying to pick pocket you. We were talking about her purse earlier, keep an eye on it.” holiday shopper, Jeremy Stewart said.

Whether getting gas or picking up packages, law enforcement says thieves strike when the opportunity is right, so when your out stay alert.

“I think the main thing is just being around other people where there’s other people who can see you and you can see other people and in a place that is well lit,” Lt. Flood said.

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