What is Suspicious?

These are always suspicious activities:
  • Person screaming, cries for HELP or POLICE.
  • Loud or obscene shouting indicating a disturbance.
  • An explosion or gunshot.
  • The sound of breaking glass.
  • Someone trying to break into a building.
  • Someone tampering with a motor vehicle.
  • Person(s) publicly displaying weapons.
  • Smashed doors or windows.

The Description of Suspect Checklist can be used to help you with key descriptive details.

Suspicious Persons
Action Possible Significance
Person waiting in front of building or residence, especially when building is closed or owners are away. Casing a building/office/residence for a place to burglarize, burglary in progress. 
Person carrying property at an unusual hour or in an unusual location: Leaving the scene of a burglary, robbery, or theft. 
Person loitering around cars or going car to car peeking into them, especially in parking lots, carports, or on streets. Potential car thief or theft from vehicle. 
Person exhibiting unusual behavior or physical symptoms. May be injured under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or in need of medical attention.

Suspicious Vehicles

Action Possible Significance
A slow-moving vehicle (particularly at night with lights off) being driven aimlessly. Casing a place to burglarize or considering some other anti-social behavior.
Vehicles being loaded with valuables if parked in front of closed residence or building. Suspicious even if the vehicle is a legitimate-looking commercial unit. Burglary or other theft in progress.
An abandoned vehicle. a stolen vehicle; also an unsafe place for children to hide and play.
Vehicles containing weapons. Owner may engage in illegal activities.
Unusual property in vehicles, especially at unusual hours. For example, TV sets, stereos, unmounted tape decks, auto parts, and computers. Stolen property.
Persons being forced into vehicles. A kidnapping in progress, a sex offender, or a domestic violence situation.