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If you're heading out for the holidays for an extended period, Jackson police can watch your house for you

Posted at 9:29 AM, Nov 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-23 09:29:14-05

JACKSON, Mich. — With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we’re officially in holiday season. If you’re planning on traveling -- and who wouldn’t want to in this weather – you may want to check out the vacation watch program.

Police Chief Elmer Hitt says over the past four or five years there’s been hundreds of submissions.

“One submission could equal multiple visits to the house by an officer or officers depending on the shift. I’d like to see it used more,” he said.

He says this could give residents a little extra comfort that their house is being kept an eye on.

“A lot of people when they go out of town have a family member or friend, someone, check on the property,” he said. “Some don’t. But, even those that do it, it gives them additional assurance that their property is being looked it.”

The program, which started in 2014, is only available for residents within the city limits.

“You never know what that check my prevent from occurring because, simply, if something doesn’t happen you never know what you don’t know about so that extra visibility and presence has the potential of preventing some type of criminal activity in a neighborhood,” Hitt said. “Not only the house specifically they’re checking.”

This is what you can do.

Submit a vacation watch request form through the city of Jackson’s website. Put in basic details about your home and other information you want officers to know.

After verification, patrol officers in the neighborhood will periodically check on the house for signs of a problem.

“There are certainly been some instances where they have found unlocked doors that somebody left unlocked behind when they left or something of that nature,” Hitt said.

The information remains confidential and can only be accessed by the police department.

If you don’t want to do it online, you can also print the form and mail or drop it off to have that extra layer of security as you enjoy the holidays.

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