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Police Department

421 Main Street South
Southbury, CT 06488
Maps and Directions
P:(203) 264-5912
F:(203) 264-5913

Child Safety Tips | Prevent Burglaries | Prevent Car Break-Ins | Prevent Identity Theft | Neighborhood Watch

Prevent Burglaries

Across the country, a burglar enters a house, apartment or condominium every fifteen seconds, according to the Burglary Prevention Council. The majority of burglaries are crimes of opportunity, meaning that there are steps that you can take to deny a burglar the opportunity to steal from you.

Secure Entry Points

  • Make sure that external doors are solid rather than hollow core. These doors should have a minimum thickness of 1¾ inch or metal doors no thinner than 18-gauge sheet metal. Use a door peephole or wide-angle viewer to view callers prior to opening the door.
  • Make sure the frame is also solid and without gaps.
  • External doors should be secured with a deadbolt lock. This lock should have a minimum 2-inch throw, and the strike plate should be secured with at least 3-inch screws. If the lock is within 40 inches of a glass, it should be a double-cylinder deadbolt operated by a key on the inside as well as on the outside.
  • Locks are also needed on windows, especially ground level windows. Sliding glass doors also need to be secured with a quality lock. At a minimum, place a bar or stick in the track to help prevent the door from being forced open.
  • Lock your doors, even when you are leaving the house for a short period. The best security devices are useless if you leave the house unlocked.
  • Check your house from the outside for hiding places. Trim back shrubbery so it doesn't conceal doors and windows.
  • If you locked yourself out of your house, how easy would it be to get in? If you can manage it, so can a burglar. Don't hide a house key outside the home. It is better to give one to a trusted neighbor, friend or relative that could respond if you should experience a lockout.
  • Never leave a message on your answering machine that might suggest you are not home or that would hint at what time you might be arriving home.
  • Glass should not be used in exterior doors or in adjacent glass panels within 40 inches of any door lock.
  • French or double doors can be secured by making one of the doors stationary with concealed flush-mounted header and threshold bolts. The active door should be secured to the inactive door by using a deadbolt lock.
  • The movable section of a sliding glass door should be on the inside of the fixed portion of the door, and secondary devices such as pin locks or Charlie bars should be installed at ground level. The mounting screws for the lock casing should be inaccessible from the outside.
  • A garage door is most secure without windows, thus preventing easy access to locks. If your garage has windows, either paint them or use the frosted contact paper over the glass so a view of the garage is not possible.


  • Keep trees and bushes pruned so that they do not provide a hiding place for burglars. A good rule of thumb is to keep bushes near the house pruned below three feet, and keep trees pruned so that the lowest branches are at least eight feet off the ground.
  • Keep tree limbs, sheds, and anything else that could be used as a ladder far enough away from the house, so that they do not serve as roof access.

Additional Security Measures:

  • Install motion lights around main entry points.
  • Make an inventory of your valuables, including a picture and the serial number when there is one.
  • Engrave your name on valuable items such as tools.
  • Don't leave boxes advertising a new purchase out by your curb. The box from that new television serves as an advertisement for a would-be burglar.

Neighborhood Watch:

The Neighborhood Watch program is an effective means of telling burglars that neighbors watch out for each other. Be an active participant if you are already in a Neighborhood Watch block. To bring Neighborhood Watch to your area, call the Community Resource Officer at (203) 264-5912.