Sheriff Wayne Ivey Offers Personal Safety Tips
By Wayne Ivey, Brevard County Sheriff // July 25, 2013
always be aware of potential danger
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – This fall thousands of Brevard County’s recent high school graduates will leave home for college, military, or to take jobs in other areas.
For nearly 18 years of their lives they have lived under the protective umbrella of their parents, grandparents, or guardian and are now leaving that safety zone to face tomorrow’s future.
As exciting as that time can be, it can also be a frightening time for both them and their family who now worry about the safety of their child. That is why it is important to make sure we share as much “Personal Safety” information with them as we can to give them every tool they need to help protect themselves in their new environments.
‘COLLEGE BOUND SAFETY’
Our Crime Prevention Unit recently launched a new program for our graduating seniors titled, “College Bound Safety,” that provides each senior in our schools vital crime prevention information to help keep them safe in almost any type of scenario.
All too often we go through our daily travels, never stopping to consider the various environments we are in such as parking lots and strange buildings. When entering or leaving a store, mall, or other building, always look for strangers parked in nearby cars or that may be following you. I personally like to see our citizens talking on their cell phone as they enter or leave a building as it signals to a would be attacker that you have immediate contact with someone who can summon help if needed.
One of the first areas we want this group to consider is how to use awareness to keep from becoming a victim of a violent crime. There are three primary reasons why we become the victim of a violent attack: Lack of awareness, body language, and wrong place/wrong time.
Of the three reasons, we can only do something to prevent the first two, as the third reason is not in our control. We want our citizens to be aware of the types of crimes that are trending, but also be aware of their immediate surroundings. We must watch other’s actions and make sure that we look for anyone approaching us or anyone that is in a position to harm us.
All too often we go through our daily travels, never stopping to consider the various environments we are in such as parking lots and strange buildings. When entering or leaving a store, mall, or other building, always look for strangers parked in nearby cars or that may be following you.
I personally like to see our citizens talking on their cell phone as they enter or leave a building as it signals to a would be attacker that you have immediate contact with someone who can summon help if needed. I also like to see people with their keys readily accessible to activate their car’s door locks or emergency alarm if they sense anyone approaching or concerning.
KEEP YOUR GUARD UP AT HOME
Home is where we often feel the safest and have a tendency to let our guard down. While at home we encourage everyone to keep their cellular telephone at their bedside so they have the ability to immediately call 911 while also fleeing from danger.
Also remember when calling 911 to immediately disclose your location so that we immediately know where to send help.
If you have an alarm system, please make sure that you routinely test the system and then use the system when you are both home and away. Another tool that is available to help protect you and your home is to keep your vehicle keys next to your bedside so that if you hear a noise outside your home you can activate your car alarm and scare any potential intruders away.
BEWARE SOCIAL MEDIA DANGERS
Another area of concern is the type of information our young adults put on Facebook and other social media sites. Never check-in at locations so that anyone monitoring your page can know exactly where you currently are or places you frequent.
We ask that everyone also refrain from posting messages and tweets that tell the entire world they are going to be away from home. Additionally, please be extremely careful about the amount of personal information posted on social media sites as Identity Thieves constantly search through social media sites for valuable information.
While these are only a few of the safety tips we want our parents and guardians to discuss with their recent graduates we know with certainty that there is a direct correlation between awareness education and preventing crimes.
Please share this article with your child so that each of them can enjoy their new experiences while avoiding becoming the victim of a crime, and visit our website at BrevardSheriff.com for more vital crime prevention information.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey has been a law enforcement officer for over three decades. Sheriff Ivey is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and has a Bachelor’s Degree from Daytona State College in Management and Supervision. Sheriff Ivey’s background in law enforcement is inclusive of Management, Criminal Investigations, Narcotics, Patrol Services, Public Integrity Investigations, and Corrections.
Prior to being elected in 2012, Sheriff Ivey served the citizens of the State of Florida as a Resident Agent in Charge for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. As a member of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Sheriff Ivey developed and created the country’s first ever statewide Task Force on Identity Theft.
That same year the Task Force was named one of the top five most innovative programs in the country by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and investigated approximately 44 million dollars in fraud cases. Additionally, as a member of FDLE, Sheriff Ivey created the Child Abduction Response Team (C.A.R.T) that re-defined the way Child Abduction cases are conducted throughout the country today.
The program was later selected as the most innovative program in the country by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and is now used as a nationwide model in the response and investigation of child abductions.
Sheriff Ivey has testified before the United States Congress on law enforcement related matters and has extensive experience in the area of Public Integrity Investigations. Sheriff Ivey was honored as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Special Agent of the Year (1996) and was also recognized by the Commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for his Outstanding Contributions to Criminal Justice. In August of 2011 Sheriff Ivey was honored by the National Organization of Victims Advocacy for his work at the national level as an advocate of victim’s rights and protection.
Sheriff Ivey speaks regularly on topics such as Identity Theft, Crime in America, Human Trafficking, Domestic Violence, and Self Defense through Mental Preparedness. Sheriff Ivey firmly believes that Crime Prevention and Education are vital to reduce our crime rate and protect our community.