What Crimes Frequently Happen During the Holidays?

The holiday season is a time of peace and joy; however, it is also a time when crime rates increase. While some people are busy shopping for their loved ones, others are looking to take advantage of the situation. According to Allstate Insurance Company, crime rates tend to rise in November and December.

There are steps that people can take to prevent being victimized by a crime. There are also steps that others should take to prevent from falling into a trap of breaking the law.

Shoplifting

As the stores are packed with shoppers, some might take advantage of the situation and slip something into their bags. The motivation for committing this crime can range from greed to desperation. They may want to get a certain item for someone, but they just do not have the money, so they turn to theft. It is estimated that about one in 11 people will shoplift this Christmas season, although the real number is probably much higher than that.

Impaired Driving

When people gather for the holidays, there is no shortage of alcohol. Some people may be tempted to drink and drive. Before attending a party, a person should have a back-up plan to avoid driving under the influence (DUI). Using a rideshare service or getting a ride with a sober driver are two safe and viable alternatives. Obtaining a DUI/DWI charge is a serious matter.

In New Jersey, while it is not a criminal offense, a DUI conviction can lead to massive fines, a mandatory surcharge, and the loss of a person’s driver’s license for three to 9 months, depending on the blood alcohol content (BAC) level of the driver.

Domestic Abuse

The holiday season is a wonderful time when families come together to celebrate. Getting together with the family is not always cause for celebration, there can be real friction among family members. The combination of alcohol and family-related stress comes around this time of year. Tensions can turn into physical altercations. These fights can result in police involvement and arrests. When these situations arise, it is best for people to relax. In some cases, it might make sense to walk away for a few minutes and calm down.

Burglary

Burglary is another common crime around this time of year. When a person orders a package online, it is usually left at the door. Some unscrupulous individuals may see packages and quickly grab the items. Other criminals patrol the streets looking for packages. There are others who see open presents in the windows and are tempted to break in and steal them.

The best way to discourage burglars is to not give them the temptation. When possible, a person should have a package delivered while they are home or sent to a person’s house who will be home. A neighbor can keep an eye on a place or even pick up a package for someone. Another option is to install a security camera on the porch to monitor activity. For the presents in the house, it is best to keep window blinds and curtains closed while away, or keep the more expensive presents away from windows.

Identity Theft

Christmas shopping is a time for discounts and deals, and shoppers will let their guards down. A shopper may provide their personal data onto an unsecured website, which is easily hacked.

Shoppers must be careful to guard against such identify theft, and be wary of using their credit cards at busy stores. When shopping online, they must verify that the website they are working on is protected from such hackers and is authentic.

What Should I Do if I am Accused of a Crime?

During the holiday season, crime rates increase. If a person is accused of a crime, it is essential for them to speak to a lawyer. A lawyer will protect the rights of their client. A lawyer might be able to lessen or eliminate a charge, so it is important to contact a lawyer right away after one is accused of a crime.

Haddonfield Criminal Defense Lawyers at Agre & St. John Protect Clients Accused of Crimes

If you are being accused of a crime, reach out to one of our Haddonfield criminal defense lawyers at Agre & St. John. Call us at 856-428-7797 or contact us online for an initial consultation. Located in Haddonfield, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County, and Salem County.

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