You might recall Matt Baume’s series on LGBT crime from earlier this month (catch up here, here and here). In the series, Matt reported on not just the rise in crimes against LGBT folks, but on the failure of many victims to report them.
Castro Community on Patrol (CCOP) wants to change both of these issues, and is circulating a flier with tips and hints on how to make this Pride weekend a safe and fun one.
The business card-sized flyer (that you can find all over the Castro, they say) gives tips on such things as pickpockets, “roofied” drinks, excessive use of alcohol or drugs, lost ATM cards, assault, hate crimes or date raps, car break-ins, and robberies, and lists of helpful phone numbers in case any of those things do occur. It’s all common sense, of course, but we’ve all let common sense fall by the wayside in times of fun, right?
So, per the CCOP, it might not hurt to be reminded that:
While in the Club, be aware of pickpockets who may dance close to you and try to take your wallet. Keep all valuables in your front pocket and try not to carry large amounts of cash or multiple credit cards on you. If you end up losing an ATM card, immediately call your credit card company to see if there are any fraudulent charges on your account.
In terms of drugged or “roofied” drinks, it’s the usual advice: never leave your drink unattended and don’t accept any drinks from strangers. Be aware of what party drugs you take, as many combinations can be deadly as well as how much you drink; do not drive home under the influence. If anyone is passed out in the club, regardless of if you know them or not, make sure to notify club security.
When it comes to crime, report any that you see and try to get as many details as possible. Write down details, look for other witnesses, get descriptions of the people involved; make a mental picture of the scene. Do not follow attackers and try to stay in crowded, well-lit areas.
Car break-ins usually happen when items of value are left in plain sight in a vehicle so make sure to stow anything you don’t want stolen. If you are victim of a robbery, it’s best to comply with the robber and then notify police.