Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Safety Tips

by Lt. Tex Allen
from the Madison Night Mysteries
by Diane Vallere

Hello, Ma’am, Tex Allen here. Police lieutenant for the Lakewood Police Department in Dallas, Texas. I’ve been on the force for about twenty-some years now and I take my job seriously. That means I take your safety seriously. And even though there are some residents who insist on ignoring my advice to stay out of my investigations (like Madison Night), I think it’s important to review general safety precautions every now and then. You might not like the fact that I’m a declared bachelor or that I have been known to date women half my age. I’m okay with that.

Here’s the thing. Bad guys know they’re bad guys. And good guys know they’re good guys. But you don’t know which is which, so in an unfamiliar situation, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Here are a couple of tips to help you stay safe:

  1. Be aware of your surroundings. This should go without saying, but I’ve seen too many homicides to assume anything. No matter where you are, whether it’s a place you know or new territory, be aware of the people around you. You never know what’s going through the mind of the person next to you
  2. Listen to your instincts: If that little voice in your head says to get out of a particular location, then get out of that particular location. Period. What is worse: being told you’re imagining things, or being a victim? Yeah, that’s what I thought.
  3. Avoid carjackings and car muggings: lock your doors, don’t leave your purse on the passenger-side seat. Women have a tendency to sit in their cars and do—hell, I don’t know what you do. But too often, I get a call about a carjacking that took place in a parking lot where someone was sitting in the car with the doors unlocked. So lock your doors when you get into the car, or better yet, start your car and get going to wherever it is you’re going.
  4. When you travel, whether you stay at 5-star hotels or 1-star hotels, know that crimes against women happen in them all too often. Don’t give out your room number. Don’t answer the door if you’re not expecting room service. And consider carrying a rubber door stop with you. Jam it under the door at night—it’ll hold the door better than the bolt on its own.

I would like to think that these tips will help you be safe. The worst thing for me is to get a call that a crime against one of you already occurred, like the crimes that happened in Pillow Stalk, That Touch of Ink, and With Vics You Get Eggroll. 

Respectfully Submitted,

Lt. Thomas Rexford Allen, Lakewood PD

aka “Tex”

Leave a comment with a safety tip and be entered to win an ebook copy of Pillow Stalk, book #1 in the Madison Night Mystery Series. Winner will be selected on Thursday, April 7.

18 comments:

  1. Swing your purse at the person.

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  2. When loading your car from a shopping trip. Put your purse in the car and shut the door before unloading. Many use that as an opportunity to snatch and run. When in the store fasten the seat belt for children through the handle of your purse. Or, no matter where you are. Keep your purse firmly against your body, in the front. Less chance of it being snatched. However, on one security cam saw an older woman with a shoulder bag dragged to the ground by a guy determined to snatch her purse. But if firmly against body they usually don't bother. Della at deepotter@peoplepc.com

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  3. Hi Tex. Thanks for the words of wisdom, all good points to remember and practice. I have not had the pleasure of meeting you or Madison yet but I would love the chance read and learn more. Especially what Madison thinks of your dating women half your age. Thanks for the offer. mlarkin at rmrgroup dot com.

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  4. When I drive or sit in my car I always have my purse buckled in my seat belt. I was ridding in the car with my mom many years ago and we were stopped at a light with the windows down. A guy reached right in and tried to get my moms purse which was sitting in my lap. He grabbed it and it didn't go anywhere but he fell down and by the time he go up the police were there. utaker555@gmail.com

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  5. Good tips. I always lock my car! Even ata gas station when I'm pumping the gas. The bad folks are getting more and brazen today. It's a game with them.
    Dspinlexo@aol.com

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  6. Brittany, I like your story! Great incentive for following your example.
    libby dodd at comcast dot net

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  7. always keep pepper spray and a cell phone handy. also, when walking through a parking lot, hold your keys in your fist so the end of the key pokes through your fingers. if you get attacked you can hit the attacker with that and it'll hurt a lot worse than if you just hit with your hand.

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  8. Those are some great tips from Tex! bobandcelia@sbcgobal.net

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  9. When traveling wear a cross body strapped purse. An over the shoulder purse is too easy for someone to snatch from your body.
    Love you Tex. I will take safety tips from you anytime.

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  10. When parking at the mall at night, park by a light pole and make sure there is no one sitting in the car next to your car. Also keep your key fob for your car in your hand so you can hit the panic button.

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  11. I always keep my hand on my purse strap in the seat of the shopping cart. Another thought is to keep your car keys between your fingers so you can jab at an attacker with them. And I hope you never have to use those ideas!

    ElaineE246 at msn dot com

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  12. Always tell someone where you are going. I know everyone seems to be going digital, but land lines still exist. Leave a message on a home answering machine stating when and where you are going and with whom. If plans change, call you house, and leave an updated message. When you get home, erase the message.

    kat8762@aol.com

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  13. Try to be out and about with a trusted friend.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  14. Oh gosh, first thank you for the giveaway, I sure do want the first book, then you know what will happen I will have to purchase the others. This looks like a series I would love to read. My tip is to keep your cell phone handy and watch where you put it in the car so it will not fly out of your hand range if you are in accident, I have little bag I have fastened to seat belt I have my phone in. I had friend who was in accident, her car ran off road in ravine, took two days to find her. Her phone flew where she could not reach it. Georgia
    queenvictoria50@aol.com

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  15. Elevators--leave if you're uncomfortable! I love this series and glad to see Tex visiting! Maybe Vallere will bring the gang back for another story! I just saw it was Doris Day's birthday this week!
    JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

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  16. Get your keys out before you exit a building. I put the car key between my thumb and index finger ready to go and the others between my other fingers. can poke or scratch with them.

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  17. Comments for the contest are now closed. Congrats to Dee Sprinkle for winning an ecopy of Pillow Stalk!

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