MARANA, AZ (Tucson News Now) - The Marana Police Department has started its annual effort to keep shoppers safe as Christmas approaches.
The agency’s “Holiday Patrols” will be in place from Dec. 17 until the day after Christmas.
Extra officers will be patrolling popular areas like the Arizona Pavilions, the Tucson Outlet Mall and the Ina/Thornydale corridor.
Officers in marked and unmarked cars will be scattered through the shopping areas, keeping an eye on last-minute shoppers.
Sgt. Chriswell Scott said the biggest mistake people make is leaving expensive gifts inside their cars, such as iPads and gaming consoles.
He wants to remind shoppers to store them somewhere secure in their cars and to lock the doors.
He also wants to urge shoppers to not leave purses unattended in shopping carts as thieves could be waiting for the moment you look away.
The agency hopes the extra patrols curb crime and remind shoppers to be more alert.
“Just be aware of your surroundings when you come out of the store. Just be aware of what’s going on, maybe take your head out of your cell phone, pay attention to your surroundings. … And if you see anything suspicious, give us a call,” Scott said.