Returning home to realize that your home was burglarized is a nightmare. You feel afraid and violated after discovering that the burglars took your valuables and sentimental mementos, and compromised your privacy. The criminals may have also damaged your property by breaking your windows and doors and ruining your furniture. While you may feel helpless, it helps to keep a clear mind and to remain calm. Here are some things you should do after a home burglary to help you resume your normal life as soon as possible.
Immediately Notify The Police
While calling the police would seem like the first thing burglary victims would do, many are too traumatized to think rationally. Because of this, they may seek the comfort of speaking to a loved one such as a spouse or parent. While you should eventually call those close to you, you should only do so after leaving the house and calling the police.
You never know if the criminals are still in your home, so you'll need to evacuate for your own safety. Once the police have arrived on the scene and have thoroughly secured your premises, you can then return to your home. By notifying the authorities as soon as possible, the criminals are more likely to be caught as they may still be in the vicinity. In addition to calling the police, make sure that you do not contaminate the crime scene by going through your belongings or trying to clean up, as this may compromise essential evidence.
After the police have completed their search of your home and have collected sufficient evidence from the burglary, it is time to take inventory and document your losses and damages. Take pictures of your home and damaged belongings, and document the items that were stolen. The most common items taken in burglaries include jewelry, cash, electronics, and firearms.
Burglaries are difficult cases to solve, and because of this, it is important that you provide the police with as much pertinent information as possible, including serial numbers and photos of your electronics. When you purchase new electronics for your home, take pictures of them so that in the event of a burglary, you will have the information to give to police. If you do not have pictures of your stolen items, draw pictures of them to the best of your recollection and document any outstanding details about them so that your descriptions are as realistic as possible.
To help keep you, your family, and your property safe, consider the benefits of home security systems. When a security professional installs your system, he or she will also provide you with signs and stickers to place around your property alerting criminals that your home is protected. This will greatly reduce your risk of becoming a crime victim.