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Mission police provide holiday shopping tips

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The busiest shopping season of the year has arrived. 

While holiday sales are attracting shoppers, thieves could also be moving to some of the most popular shopping centers in the Valley.  

According to the Mission Police Department, three car burglaries were reported last year at shopping centers in the city between Black Friday and Christmas. 

One of the top reasons this happens is because people forget to lock their car doors, police say.

Mission police spokesman Investigator Art Flores said criminals go around testing to see who left the door of their vehicles unlocked to discretely take items from cars.

“My best advice is when you shop, make sure you put all your items in the trunk,” Flores said. “Make sure your purses are not in the front seat, anything that's valuable."

Police recommend shoppers be aware of their surroundings in case they’re being watched. If you see a suspicious car going up and down the parking lot, call the police to report it. If possible, don’t shop alone and park your vehicle close to a well-lit area and keep all purses close to your body.

Among the shoppers heeding Flores’ advice is Crystal Galadis, who said she started her shopping early this year.

“I try to come early, and I always get my kids first and lock my car,” Galadis said, adding that she has a few shopping tips of her own.

“For everyone to keep a lookout, always watch your surroundings and try to keep your kids safe as well,” Galadis said.

As an extra precaution, the Mission Police Department will have more patrols at shopping centers this holiday season. They’ve also set up new surveillance towers throughout the shopping centers.

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