Being a part of the solution

Published 5:36 pm Tuesday, October 3, 2017

What the statistics say about Washington is that it has a relatively high non-violent crime rate. Look a little closer at those statistics, and it’s one crime in particular that stands out: larceny.

Larceny is the same thing as shoplifting; it’s the same thing as theft — out of a yard, as in a bicycle left out overnight that has disappeared come morning; out of a car, when someone walking by sees a GPS and a cup-holder full of change in an unlocked car and decides it’s theirs for the taking.

Washington has a crime problem, all right. But the crimes are mostly about opportunity.

Any small, southern town has both character and values. People want to believe the character and values of their town’s residents are such that if a door is left unlocked, no one will enter without permission; if a homeowner forgets to put away the lawnmower at the end of the day, no one will walk away with it that night.

Some would say, “Well, that’s the way it used to be.” Things could be left unattended. Unfortunately, that’s not the case anymore and, more often than not, opportunity is too much of a temptation.

There are three parts to a crime of this sort: the actions of person who commits the crime, the existence of a victim and the opportunity. Take away any one of these, and there is no crime. What the people of Washington, and all of Beaufort County, can do to prevent crime is simple: lock it up.

Lock home doors and windows. Lock cars. Lock outbuildings. Make sure tools and toys are put away. Every person can do his part to fight crime by using common sense and taking away the opportunity to become a victim.

Be proactive and part of the solution. Lock up.