Police watching over Clearwater parking lots during busy shopping season

CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA)– Clearwater police officers are spread out across the city and are stationed at numerous shopping destinations, as the holiday shopping season kicks off.

The Clearwater Police Department began its Operation Holiday on Black Friday.

Throughout the holiday season, officers will be on foot, in cars, on bicycles and in surveying suspicious activity from the Skywatch tower.

The tower gives them a bird’s eye view of the parking lot at Westfield Countryside Mall.

Other popular shopping destinations under surveillance around Clearwater include Clearwater Mall, Best Buy, Walmart, and Target.

Clearwater police want to remind the public about way they can make their holiday shopping season a safe one.

  • Always lock your car doors.
  • Never leave presents or other valuables inside your car where they can be seen. Secure them in the trunk.
  • Park in well-lit areas.
  • Shop with a friend or group when possible.
  • When walking to your car, have your keys in your hand so you can access your vehicle quickly, if necessary.
  • Don’t be distracted by texting or talking on your cell phone as you walk in the parking lot or try to enter your car. Always be aware of your surroundings.
  • Don’t leave purses or other valuables in a cart while you turn away to look at something in a store aisle. Always keep those items in your sight.
  • When walking to your car from a store, don’t have your line of sight blocked by multiple packages or purchases you have made. Always be able to see around you.

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