HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Now that Christmas gifts are unwrapped and all the trash is out on the curb, you may want to think twice about how you're exposing yourself to thieves.
The Hattiesburg Police Department (HPD) and city of Hattiesburg said leaving Christmas trash out makes families easy prey for thieves.
“The closer it gets to Christmas, with the sales and everything, everybody is getting new TV’s especially after Thanksgiving, you know Black Friday, so our trash pickup our garbage pick-up increases about 10% to 15% at that time" said Jacquline McCain with the Public Works department.
There are ways you can protect your family and make you a tough target for thieves. McCain said, "If they are getting new, lets say, TV's and everything, fold the boxes up and put them in a recycling, because the one thing that unsavory carriers are looking for is an indication of what is in the house.”
HPD spokesman Lt. Jon Traxler said, “Don’t leave the new things where the blinds are open and the burglars can see the new stuff.”
You can take extra precaution and help police too. “Make sure you got your serial numbers and things like that, that we would need, just in case your stuff got stolen and we can help try and locate it" Lt. Traxler said.
City officials are hosting a Stuff-A-Truck event to properly dispose of trash. McCain said its the best way to help the environment and keep thieves away.
The event is on Wednesday at 9 a.m. at Kamper Park.