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Crime Prevention

​Drugs: Shatter the Myths (opens in new window)

​Presentation by Cristina Thomas, Public Health Education Mangager for North Texas Poison Center.


​OPERATION SECURE CAR

NOT EVERYONE "SHOPS" THE LEGAL WAY!

Some people might just break into your car and help themselves! Stop 'em cold! The Coppell Police Department wants you to participate in OPERATION SECURE CAR! Help us help you reduce car burglaries and vehicle thefts by following these simple rules:

  • Lock your car. An unlocked vehicle is an open invitation to a car thief. Be sure to lock all points of entry into your vehicle and tightly shut any windows including the vent or wind-wing windows.
  • When shopping, hide your packages. Out of sight, out of mind. Thieves don’t want to waste time breaking into your car if they aren’t guaranteed a bargain!
  • When shopping, park in well-lighted areas at night. At home, put your car in the garage when possible AND close your garage door and keep it closed.
  • Remove valuable possessions from the car. Items like cell phones, PDAs, jewelry, garage door openers, cameras, laptops and the bags you carry them in are just as enticing to a thief.
  • Use a secondary anti-theft device if you own one.
  • Wheels are hot items in the crime world. It doesn't take long to remove lug nuts and take your tires. Try locking lug nuts (this might slow the thief down) but don't leave the lug nut key in your glove box (that's the first place they will look). Even better, lock your car in your garage.​

"LOCK IT UP TIGHT AND OUT OF SIGHT"!​​

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​CURFEW HOURS FOR MINORS

The City of Coppell has an established city ordinance for curfew hours for minors. A minor is a person between ten years of age and sixteen years of age. The hours of curfew are Sunday thru Thursday from 11 pm until 6 am. The hours of curfew for Friday and Saturday are midnight to 6 am. The curfew hours established remain in effect for the entire year and do not change during summer break. There are three ways to commit an offense:

(1) If a minor remains in a public place or on the premises of an establishment within the city during curfew hours.

(2) A parent or guardian of a minor knowingly permits, or by insufficient control allows, the minor to remain in a public place or on the premises of an establishment within curfew hours.

(3) The owner, operator, or any employee of an establishment knowingly allows a minor to remain upon the premises of the establishment during curfew hours.

The fine for a curfew violation is up to $500.00 for each offense. There are several defenses to prosecution:

  • The minor is accompanied by a parent or guardian
  • On an errand at the direction of a parent or guardian, without any detour or stop 
  • In a motor vehicle involved in interstate travel
  • Engaged in employment, or going to or returning from employment
  • Involved in an emergency
  • On the sidewalk by the minor’s residence
  • Attending an official sponsored function.
  • Exercising 1st Amendment right
  • Married or had been married​

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Fraud Crimes and Identity Theft

Someone has written me a check that has returned NSF or closed account. What should I do?


The Coppell Police Department does not investigate these offenses. If this has happened to you contact the Dallas County District Attorney's Office at:

DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S CHECK DIVISION
133 N. RIVERFRONT BLVD., LB 19
DALLAS, TEXAS 75207-4399
214-653-3672
8 am - 4:30 pm
Monday - Friday
For more information click here

I am a victim of ID theft. What should I do?


If you are an Coppell resident or your information has been used fraudulently in the city of Coppell you should make a police report with us. You should refer to the Federal Trade Commission's website listed below and follow the recommended steps to help you restore your credit. If you believe someone has been arrested or issued a citation using your information then you will need to contact the law enforcement agency where the incident occurred.

I am a victim of tax refund ID theft. What should I do?


You should make a police report as this is necessary in order to initiate a fraud alert with the major credit reporting bureaus. If this has happened, you will also be referred to the IRS as certain IRS forms have to be completed. Please follow the guidelines and prevention strategies at the IRS link below.

Someone has written checks on my checking account without my permission. What do I do?


Immediately contact your bank in order to close the account and file a police report in the jurisdiction where the checks were passed. Your checks may have been stolen or someone may have created counterfeit checks using your bank account and routing numbers. Please work with your bank to provide specific information when and where your check was passed; provide witness and suspect information if known and the name and contact number for the bank investigator if one has been assigned.

Someone has used my credit card/debit card without my permission. What do I do?


Immediately contact your credit card company in order to close the account and file a police report for credit card/debit card abuse with us if the transaction occurred in Coppell. You may also make a police report with us if you are a Coppell resident and your card was used online.

I am the victim of an Internet scam, for example, I have purchased or sold an item through an online classified advertisement website and later realized I was scammed. Who do I do?


You should file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a central repository for Internet related crime coordinated by the National White Collar Crime Center and the FBI. The IC3 forwards complaints to the Coppell Police Department when it appears the fraudulent activity is occurring in Coppell. Since the suspects involved in these types of crimes are often overseas and typically use fictitious names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses, the Coppell Police Department is sometimes limited in what it can do to investigate. Please refer to the IC3 link and the Little Black Book of Scams booklet ​in the helpful links section below to learn more about the different types of frauds and schemes and how to protect yourself from being victimized.

 GENERAL COMPUTER CRIME PREVENTION TIPS:

While there is no way to completely protect the data stored on your computer, taking the additional steps below will help you protect yourself from victimization.

  • Make sure your electronic device has the most recent and up to date anti-virus/anti-malware software and conduct a scan of the computer. Sometimes the best anti-virus programs can't remove the virus and therefore requires a re-install of the operating system to guarantee the virus is removed. Prior to doing this, it is recommended important files are backed up to an external storage device, like a USB thumb drive or CD/DVD recordable media. A credible computer repair business can also provide these services.
  • Be cautious of emails or text messages from unknown senders. Legitimate business emails will NEVER ask for personal identifying information and/or logins and passwords. Do not open email attachments from senders you do not know. If you believe your electronic device has been compromised, immediately remove it from the network and/or internet.
  • You can consider encrypting important files; if the computer is maliciously accessed then the files will not be readily viewable. Many of the current operating systems offer free encryption programs.
  • If you believe your personal information was compromised from the hack or virus program then you should change all account passwords and monitor your accounts for fraudulent activity (also see annual credit report in additional useful information). If fraudulent activity is noticed, then contact the Coppell Police Department to file an offense report.

GENERAL CREDIT CARD FRAUD PREVENTION TIPS:

  • ​​​Keep an eye on your credit card every time you use it, and make sure you get it back as quickly as possible.
  • Try not to let your credit card out of your sight whenever possible.
  • Be very careful to whom you give your credit card.
  • Don't give out your account number over the phone unless you initiate the call and you know the company is reputable. Legitimate companies don't call you to ask for a credit card number over the phone.
  • Never respond to emails that request you provide your credit card info via email -- and don't ever respond to emails that ask you to go to a website to verify personal (and credit card) information. These are called 'phishing' scams.
  • Never provide your credit card information on a website that is not a secure site.
  • Sign your credit cards as soon as you receive them.
  • Shred all credit card applications you receive.
  • Don't write your PIN number on your credit card -- or have it anywhere near your credit card (in the event that your wallet gets stolen).
  • Never leave your credit cards or receipts lying around.
  • Shield your credit card number so that others around you can't copy it or capture it on a cell phone or other camera.
  • Keep a list in a secure place with all of your account numbers and expiration dates, as well as the phone number and address of each bank that has issued you a credit card. Keep this list updated each time you get a new credit card.
  • Only carry around credit cards that you absolutely need. Don't carry around extra credit cards that you rarely use.
  • Open credit card bills promptly and make sure there are no bogus charges. Treat your credit card bill like your checking account -- reconcile it monthly. Save your ​receipts so you can compare them with your monthly bills.
  • If you find any charges that you don't have a receipt for -- or that you don't recognize -- report these charges promptly (and in writing) to the credit card issuer.
  • Always void and destroy incorrect receipts.
  • Shred anything with your credit card number written on it.
  • Never sign a blank credit card receipt. Carefully draw a line through blank portions of the receipt where additional charges could be fraudulently added.
  • Carbon paper is rarely used these days, but if there is a carbon that is used in a credit card transaction, destroy it immediately.
  • Never write your credit card account number in a public place (such as on a postcard or so that it shows through the envelope payment window).
  • Ideally, it's a good idea to carry your credit cards separately from your wallet -- perhaps in a zippered compartment or a small pouch.
  • Never lend a credit card to anyone else.
  • If you move, notify your credit card issuers in advance of your change of address.

 HELPFUL LINKS:

Social Security Administration​​

If you suspect someone is using your social security number to obtain employment, contact the Social Security Administration's fraud hotline at 1-800-269-0271. Order a copy of your Personal Earnings and Benefit Estimate Statement (PEBES) to check the accuracy of your work history on file with the Social Security Administration. You can obtain a PEBES application at your local Social Security office.

Internal Revenue Service

The IRS established the Identity Protection Unit to assist taxpayers resolve identity theft issues. Victims can call 800-908-4490 Monday – Friday, 8 am - 8 pm.

Federal Trade Commission ​

This website is a one-stop national resource to learn about the crime of identity theft. It provides detailed information to help you deter, detect, and defend against identity theft.

Attorney General Of Texas​

The Office of the Attorney General provides useful information related to identity theft. A step by step resource guide is available.

Internet Crime Complainant Center​

Internet Crime Complainant Center (IC3) is an alliance between the National White Collar Crime Center and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It provides a central point to report internet based crime.

Little Black Book of Scams​​

This booklet describes the many types of frauds and Internet scams that suspects use to target citizens and steal their money. It was originally developed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and reproduced by the Canadian Competition Bureau.

US Postal Inspection Service​

If you suspect that your mail has been stolen or diverted with a false change-of-address request, contact your local postal inspector at  https://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/ or by calling 800-275-8777.

Annual Credit Report​

This central site allows you to request a free credit report, once every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

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