If you have been watching the local news or reading frustrating posts on social media, you will know by now that Alaska now ranks in the top 10 most dangerous states to live. Many link this upward tick in criminal activity to the enactment of Senate Bill 91, "Omnibus Criminal Law & Procedure; Corrections Act," and the current budget crisis.
For the record, had the State of Alaska implemented the rehabilitation facilities and programs FIRST, this bill, designed to lower recidivism and prison populations, would have seen more success. Instead we find criminals are committing more crimes due to the lower bails or no bails, reduced pre-trial incarceration, and lack of rehabilitative programs designed to correct/treat the root cause of their criminal activities. Now add the factor of lower law enforcement presence, and you have the perfect environment to nurture progressive criminal activity.
Criminals break in to your mail boxes, steal your vehicles, burglarize your homes, and much worse, as the message is sent “do as you wish, there is NO consequence.”
Alaska lawmakers that have listened to the voices of victims at townhall meetings, etc., are undoubtedly going to consider the complete repeal of this bill and take actions to increase recruitment and retention of public safety personnel, mental health professionals, and educators, if they wish to seek reelection.
Until then you must consider taking precautions to protect yourself and family members. If you wish to prevent yourself or loved ones from being the next victim, you have to take action today!
Firearms: If you are considering the purchase of a firearm for home protection, do your research first! The most important question you MUST ask yourself before purchasing a firearm, “are you willing to use it on a fellow human being?” If the answer is “no” then consider another option as a firearm in the hands of someone not committed or respectful of its use, will potentially just end up putting it in the hands of the criminal. There are several respected firearms instructors in Alaska. Seek them out and ask questions.
Home security systems: There are two primary choices, aside from the four-legged “man’s best friend”. You have the DYI systems that are monitored solely by the homeowner, such as the Ring system (see our Recommended Products section), or the professionally installed systems such as ADT, Vivint, etc. Due to the current workload already placed on law enforcement, you must consider the fact that officers/troopers will not respond immediately (if at all) to an activated burglary alarm “that is not verified.” You can reach out to your local law enforcement leadership to get a definition on this issue, however, the only valid solution, aside from good neighbors willing to be eyewitnesses, is a camera system. Video surveillance confirmation of a burglary will almost certainly guarantee a response from any agency.
Identity theft prevention products/services: If your personal information or that of your ever-trusting elderly family member (or your kid sharing too much on their online gaming network) is stolen, you may not even know until that moment you log into your bank account and see it’s been drained. Services currently are offered which provide 24 hour/7 days a week protection of your personal information. The services we recommend don’t just alert you that something happened, they take action in preventing it from happening in the first place using some of the most advanced AI software tools available. See our Recommended Products section for more information.
Conduct a home assessment today to see where you are lacking. We have provided a free checklist for download below. Make sure you take inventory of your personal items, to include serial numbers, photographs (if you have time to take a selfie, you have time to take a picture of your valuable belongings), etc. In the event the worst happens, law enforcement have a stronger chance of recovering your items with this information.
Join a Neighborhood Watch and participate/support your local Crimestoppers Program! Thanks to social media, it has never been easier to relay suspicious activity to your friends and neighbors in real time.
REMEMBER TO REPORT ALL SUSPICOUS ACTIVITY TO YOUR LOCAL LAW ENFORCMENT OR TROOPERS.
Stay safe and please leave comments below on other recommended safety tips for others to read.
-Aegis of Alaska