MerPo shares summer break safety tips

Summer break is almost here! Time for the beach, climbing trees, rolling around in the grass, devouring ice cream and the bevy of other things that summer brings.
Before everyone leaves for the break, Mercer Police has some thoughtful summer tips to leave Mercer students with. Most of that advice goes with the old friend, Mr. Common Sense. It’s important to keep these tips in mind while traveling as well as just staying on campus.
First of all, walk with confidence! When walking somewhere on your own, keep your head up, and walk like you’re on a mission. People won’t mess with you if you look like you’re in a rush to get somewhere. According to Mercer Police officer Chief Collins, “Most crimes are crimes of opportunity. If you make yourself a victim, the perpetrator will take the opportunity to make you a victim,” said Collins.
It’s also important to stay out of unsafe areas, and try to travel with friends. Don’t decide to walk into a creepy dark alleyway in the middle of the night by yourself. As much as you want to be, you’re not Batman!
If you’re ever walking alone and feel threatened by someone approaching you, keep your keys in your hand with the blade sticking out between your fingers. This makes a good self-defense weapon should any stranger try to threaten you.
If someone is ever coming after you, make sure to make a lot of noise. Staying quiet will not help the situation at all. Scream, shout, sing at the top of your lungs! Do something! If you have a whistle on you, all the better! Just be sure to alert everyone else around you that you’re there and that someone is following you.
If you’re staying on campus, definitely put MerPo on speed dial on your phone. Not only call MerPo when you feel threatened, but also call if you see any suspicious activity. The Mercer student body serves as the eyes and ears of MerPo. If you see something weird going on, don’t hesitate to report it!
Definitely do not leave valuables laying around in your car. Take them with you, or if you must leave valuables in the car, then put them in the trunk. Leaving purses, money, laptop cases, GPS devices and cell phones out in the open could entice someone to break in. Don’t forget to hide the GPS mounts under the seat or in the trunk too. Leaving GPS mounts on the dashboard would be a definite give-away that you have expensive stuff in your car.
Sorry to anybody with expensive purses, but it’s better to put some cash in your pocket rather than carry around a purse. Purses are usually targeted because of how easy it is to grab, and there’s generally enough valuables contained to make the thief happy.
If you decide to carry a pocketbook and somebody grabs it and threatens you, just give it up. Your life is much more precious than anything that purse could store.
So, this summer while having fun and partying with friends, be sure to keep Mr. Common Sense close by. He likes to wander off sometimes if you’re not paying attention. Have a great summer!