Granted, Pacific Grove is a very safe community (lowest crime rate in Monterey County, in fact.) However, no community is immune from burglaries. There are several tips that you can take to help prevent burglaries.
The Burglary Basics
- Make your home look occupied, and make it difficult to break in.
- Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed. Even if it is for a short time, lock your doors.
- Leave lights on when you go out. If you are going to be away for a length of time, connect some lamps to automatic timers to turn them on in the evening and off during the day.
- Keep your garage door closed and locked.
- Do not allow daily deliveries of mail, newspapers or flyers build up while you are away. Arrange with the Pacific Grove Post Office to hold your mail, or arrange for a friend or neighbor to take them regularly.
- Arrange for your lawn to be mowed if you are going away for an extended time.
- Check your locks on doors and windows and replace them with secure devices.
- Pushbutton locks on doorknobs are easy for burglars to open. Install deadbolt locks on all outside doors.
- Sliding glass doors are vulnerable. Special locks are available for better security.
- Other windows may need better locks. Check with a locksmith or hardware store for alternatives.
Don't Tempt a Thief
- Lawn mowers, snow blowers, barbecues and bicycles are best stored out of sight.
- Always lock your garden sheds and garages.
- Use curtains on garage and basement windows.
- Never leave notes on your door such as "Gone shopping."
Get the Best Locks
- No lock, regardless of its quality, can be truly effective. Key-in dead bolt locks provide minimum security.
- Ask a locksmith for advice on your situation.
- Change locks immediately if your keys are lost or stolen.
- When moving into a new home, have all locks changed.
Targeting the Outside
- Have adequate exterior lighting. A motion-sensitive light is recommended for backyards.
- Trim trees and shrubs so that they cannot be used as hiding places for intruders.
- Make sure your door hinges are on the inside. .
- Most windows can be pinned for security.
- Drill a 3/16" hole on a slight downward slant through the inside window frame and halfway into the outside frame - place a nail in the hole to secure the window.
- An alarm system is excellent for home security. It provides peace of mind to homeowners, especially while on vacation. There is a wide variety of alarm systems on the market.
- Make several inquiries to different companies for the best security system available to you.
If Your Home is Broken Into:
- If you come home to find an unexplained open/broken window or door:
- Do not enter - the perpetrator may still be inside.
- Use a neighbor's phone to call police.
- Do not touch anything or clean up until Pacific Grove Police Department have inspected for evidence.
- Write down the license plate numbers of any suspicious vehicles.
- Note the descriptions of any suspicious persons.
- Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other "secret" hiding places -- burglars know where to look for hidden keys.
- Keep a detailed inventory of your valuable possessions, including a description of the items, date of purchase and original value, and serial numbers, and keep a copy in a safe place away from home -- this is a good precaution in case of fires or other disasters.
- Make a photographic or video record of valuable objects, heirlooms and antiques. Your insurance company can provide assistance in making and keeping your inventory.
- Trim your shrubbery around your home to reduce cover for burglars.
- Be a good neighbor. If you notice anything suspicious in your neighborhood, call 911 immediately.
- Mark your valuables with your driver's license number with an engraver you can borrow from your precinct. Marked items are harder for a burglar to dispose of and easier for police to recover.
- Form a Neighborhood Watch Group. We can help you work with your neighbors to improve security and reduce risk of burglary
- Consider installing a burglar alarm system.
The MOST important thing YOU can do is CALL THE POLICE to report a CRIME or any SUSPICIOUS activity. You have to be the eyes of your neighborhood. Remember, you can always remain a pair of anonymous eyes!
Domestic violence is an escalating pattern of assault and/or coercive behaviors that may include physical abuse, sexual abuse, and emotional abuse. Domestic violence affects victims in all walks of life, regardless of race, social status, or economic status. Unlike most other crimes, victims of family violence are victimized by those they trust and love. Victims may experience a wide variety of emotions and may be confused by feelings of fear, loyalty, love, guilt, and shame. They are torn between the desire to protect and help a loved one, and their responsibility to their own safety as well as the safety of any other family members in the household. Violence in the home affects everyone in the household, and unfortunately this is the reason it perpetuates in our society.
Fortunately, recent changes in the law have been enacted to help protect victims and end the cycle of violence. The attitude of the Pacific Grove Police Department is that domestic violence is a crime and must be treated as such. The purpose of this brochure is to educate and empower those whose lives have been touched by family violence. Included within, you will find information and resources regarding the law and local agencies that can offer assistance. If you have questions, or need additional assistance, you may contact the Domestic Violence Unit of the Pacific Grove Police Department at (831) 648.3147. If you are a victim of violence, or fear for your safety or the safety of another due to domestic violence, call 9-1-1 immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What will Pacific Grove Police Department do?
- When can the police make an arrest?
- What happens when an arrest is made?
- What happens next?
- What is a restraining order?
- What do I do if the person violates the order?
- What if the order was issued in another state?
- What can I do if the police do not make an arrest and I feel they should have?
- Are there other remedies available?
- What other resources are available?
- What other resources are available to assist the batterers?
- What is the victim's compensation program?
First, the responding officers will stop any violence occurring and make sure the scene is safe for everyone present, including victims, other household members, and the officers themselves. Then they will gather information about the situation and decide what should be done next. Depending on the circumstances, an arrest may be made. If the situation does not warrant an arrest, the officers will assist you with resources and other alternatives that may be considered. If there is no arrest made, ask the officer to document the incident with a police report anyway.
In most circumstances involving domestic violence, an officer will make an arrest when he/she has probable cause to believe a crime has occurred. Under many circumstances, an officer may be mandated to make an arrest. There are a number of laws, both misdemeanor and felony, that address domestic violence. The officers on scene will assess the circumstances and take action based on the applicable laws. Please understand the officers must act based upon legal and departmental guidelines, and cannot make discretionary decisions in these cases.
When an arrest is made, the person arrested will be taken to the Pacific Grove and booked into the city jail. Regardless of whether the case is a misdemeanor or felony, the arrested party will be required to post a bail bond in order to be released. A bail bond is an amount of money the court requires a defendant to forfeit in order to assure the defendant will appear in court. Required bail amounts vary depending upon the crime involved. If the defendant cannot post bond, he/she will be held until arraignment, usually within a couple of days. If the defendant is able to post bond, he/she will be released with a "stay away" order. This is a temporary order that assists the victim by restraining the perpetrator from having any contact with the victim, including telephonic contact or e-mail, until the perpetrator is arraigned in court. When a bond is posted, the Pacific Grove Police Department will attempt to notify the victim that the perpetrator is being released. If the victim is contacted or harassed by the perpetrator in any way, he/she should notify the police immediately. In that case, the police can re-arrest the perpetrator on a new criminal charge requiring an additional bail bond.
The police officers will complete a police report and forward it to the District Attorney's office. The District Attorney's office has a unit specifically trained to handle domestic violence cases. One of the attorneys in that unit will review the case and file the appropriate charges with the court. The case will then move forward through the court system. Our justice system is a complicated system, and it may be some time before the case is resolved. The Victim/Witness program at the District Attorney's Office can assist you with any questions you have regarding the court proceedings. That unit can be reached during business hours at (831) 755.5072. Their phone number is also listed in the resource section of this brochure.
A restraining order is a court order that restricts a person's actions. There are different kinds of orders available, some of which are civil orders and some which are criminal protective orders that arise from court proceedings related to a criminal case. If you have been threatened, abused, harassed, or assaulted, you can obtain an order to protect yourself and your family. There are local agencies that can assist you in obtaining a restraining order or an order of protection. Those agencies are also listed in the resource section of this brochure. You may also contact a private attorney of your choice to assist with this.
Notify the police immediately! When possible, the police will make an arrest. If it is not possible to make an immediate arrest, such as when a perpetrator calls or e-mails the victim from an unknown location, ask the officer to complete a report and forward it for prosecution. The case will then be forwarded to the District Attorney's office for a complaint to be filed. A warrant will then be issued for the perpetrator's arrest. It will be helpful to the officer if you obtain a copy of the order and keep it with you, but it is not necessary for the officer to take action.
The nation's Violence Against Women Act requires every jurisdiction in the United States to recognize and enforce any valid protection order issued by any state, tribal government, the District of Columbia, or by any commonwealth, territory or possession of the United States. If the order is current, valid, and issued in one of these jurisdictions, it will be enforced by responding officers.
You may ask to speak with the on duty field supervisor for the Pacific Grove Police Department, or call the field supervisor's office at (831) 648.3147.
Yes, you have the right to file a civil lawsuit seeking damages for any losses you have suffered as a result of abuse, including medical expenses, lost wages, and any other expenses for injuries suffered or property damaged as a result of abuse.
There are a number of local agencies that can provide you assistance. They are listed below.
- Victim/Witness Assistance Program: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, (831) 755-5072. This agency provides assistance with your court case involving proceedings, return of property, restitution, referral to community agencies and the state victim compensation program. For information about other services available in this community, you may contact someone at this program who will advise you.
- Rape Crisis Center: 24-hour service, (831) 375-4357. This agency provides support and counseling through a variety of services to the victims of sexual assault.
- YWCA Shelter Services: 24-hour service, (831) 372-6300 or 800-YWCA151. This agency can assist with domestic violence problems including emergency family shelter and counseling. For further information regarding a shelter or safe house near you, you may contact this agency. For assistance with restraining orders, refer to the number below.
- YWCA Restraining Order Services: (831) 649-0834. This agency can help you obtain a restraining order for the protection of you and your family. They can also provide support, advocacy, and assistance with counseling services.
- VINE Offender Information Program: 24-hour service. This is a free, anonymous service that allows you to check on the custody status of an offender. VINE can be utilized at any time by any touch tone phone. You may also register to receive a notification call when an offender is released or otherwise discharged from custody. To utilize this service, call toll free 877-331-8463 and follow the prompts. Monterey County, as well as several neighboring counties currently participate in the VINE Program.
- California Rural Legal Assistance: (831) 757-5221. This agency can provide you with referrals for legal assistance and restraining orders.
- Suicide Prevention: (831) 375-6966. This agency can assist with crisis intervention, counseling, and referrals for mental health services.
- Men's Alternative to Violence: (831) 443-6288. This agency provides the court mandated counseling required of offenders. This agency also provides counseling services to anyone in the general public voluntarily seeking counseling services. Counseling topics include behavior modification and courses in anger management.
- Family Service Agency: (831) 757-7915. This agency can provide low cost family counseling, including batterer's treatment programs for men and women, parent education, support groups, and a supervised visitation program.
The State of California has funds available to aid victims of violent crimes. These funds can be applied to any financial loss suffered by the victim. They can also be applied to the cost of relocation assistance and other programs designed to protect the victim from further violence. You may apply if you are a victim of violent crime or if you are legally dependent on the victim for support. If the victim is deceased, anyone who pays the burial or medical expenses may file. If the victim is a minor, the parent or guardian of the victim must apply for the child. In order to obtain state assistance, you must cooperate with the offender's prosecution.
This program is handled through the District Attorney's Office. For further information, you may contact that office at (831) 755-5070.
If you have any questions or if the Pacific Grove Police Department can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to call (831) 648-3143.
Source: Monterey Police Department
How can someone steal your identity? Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal information such as your name, Social Security number, credit card number or other identifying information, without your permission to commit fraud or other crimes.
Identity theft is a serious crime. People whose identities have been stolen can spend months or years - and their hard-earned money - cleaning up the mess thieves have made of their good name and credit record. In the meantime, victims may lose job opportunities, be refused loans, education, housing or cars, or even get arrested for crimes they didn't commit.
If you think your identity has been stolen, here's what to do NOW:
- Visit IdentityTheft.gov, the Federal Trade Commissions site for recovering from identity theft.
- Contact the fraud departments of any one of the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit file. The fraud alert requests creditors to contact you before opening any new accounts or making any changes to your existing accounts. As soon as the credit bureau confirms your fraud alert, the other two credit bureaus will be automatically notified to place fraud alerts, and all three credit reports will be sent to you free of charge.
- File an Identity Theft complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC maintains a database of identity theft cases used by law enforcement agencies for investigations. Filing a complaint also helps us learn more about identity theft and the problems victims are having so that we can better assist you.
- Close the accounts that you know or believe have been tampered with or opened fraudulently. When you file an Identity Theft complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, the system will create an Identity Theft Affidavit you can use when disputing new unauthorized accounts.
- File a police report with the Pacific Grove Police Department. Get a copy of the report to submit to your creditors and others that may require proof of the crime.
Source: Federal Trade Commission
Download Information Brochures
In 1995, a convicted child molester was arrested for the murder and rape of 7-year old Megan Kanka in a New Jersey suburb. The offender lived across the street from the Kanka residence. The Police Department, however, was prohibited from disclosing the presence of this child molester because the law did not allow the release of sex offender information to the public.
Today, this information is available to the public. On May 8, 1996, President Clinton signed the law ("Megan's Law") in remembrance of Megan Kanka. On September 25, 1996, the California State Legislature's version of Megan's Law took effect statewide. The law was implemented to allow potential victims to protect themselves and allow parents to protect their children.
Megan's Law Information in Pacific Grove
California Penal Code Section 290
Section 290 of the California Penal Code requires people convicted of certain sexual offenses to register with the local law enforcement agency responsible for the jurisdiction in which they reside within 5 working days of their birthday, and within 5 working days of changing their address. This is a requirement for the rest of their lives. If they fail to register on time, they are in violation of the law and go to jail. If they fail to notify the Police Department when they move in or out of the city, they go to jail. If they provide the Police Department with false or deceptive information about where they are living, they go to jail.
The Pacific Grove Police Department has a no tolerance policy with regard to sex registration and sends cases to the District Attorney's Office for charging of violations of 290 P.C.
On November 4, 2008, the People of the State of California approved Proposition 9, the Victims' Bill of Rights Act of 2008: Marsy's Law. This measure amended the California Constitution to provide additional rights to victims as outlined in the “Marsy’s Law Victim’s Bill of Rights.” Crime victims may obtain additional information regarding Marsy's Law and local Victim Witness Assistance Center information by contacting the Attorney General's Victim Services Unit at (877) 433-9069 or the Monterey County District Attorney Victim/Witness Assistance Program at (831) 755-5072
In the City of Pacific Grove, it is unlawful for any person to operate within 50 feet of the real property line of adjacent public or private property any leaf blower that is capable of producing continuous airborne sound that exceeds 56 dBA measured at 50 feet in any direction and to operate any leaf blower to blow leaves, dust, weeds, cuttings, refuse or any other waste or debris material into the air in a manner which allows them to settle on property not belonging to the same owner of the property on which the blower is being operated. For more information go to Pacific Grove Municipal Code 11.96.020 Leaf Blowers.
Auto burglaries are mostly crimes of opportunity…don’t give anyone an opportunity to make you a victim.
Protect yourself from becoming a victim and remember TLC:
TAKE your valuables!
Take your valuables with you or place them in your trunk before you arrive at a location where people might be watching.
LOCK it up!
Be sure to lock your vehicle and activate the alarm.
CLOSE all doors and windows!
Always close your car windows and lock your doors even if you plan to be gone briefly.
- Try to park in well-lit areas or areas visible to others.
- Burglars are tempted by: laptops, iPods, cameras, cell phones, chargers, GPS, and stereos. As well as purses, wallets, gym bags, and backpacks.
- Report suspicious people or vehicles in your neighborhood by calling the non-emergency dispatch line at (831) 647-7911.
- If you witness a crime “in-progress” call 9-1-1. To report an auto burglary that already occurred and the suspect is gone, call our non-emergency dispatch line: (831) 647-7911.