Updates from April 15th Security Briefing with Commander Sanchez, Denver Police Department District 6

April 15, 2020

Commander Aaron Sanchez, Denver Police Department (DPD) District 6, joined the Downtown Denver Partnership on April 15, 2020 to speak with our members about updated procedures and protocols the Denver Police Department (DPD) has implemented in relation to the spread of COVID-19. See the presentation from the briefing here. Some key points from the webinar include:

  • The prevention of commercial burglaries and criminal mischief to vehicles is a top priority for the DPD.
    • Burglaries are up 20%, in an effort to reduce this number, DPD is increasing the presence of patrols and covert patrols to deter crime in targeted areas.
    • Many commercial burglaries are happening Sundays through Thursdays due to  the schedule of patrols on Fridays and Saturdays. As a result, DPD is adding patrols to Sundays through Thursdays in response to these recent reports.
    • More people working from home means that street parking is more limited, which is causing residents to park further from their homes thus making vehicles more vulnerable to attempted theft. 
      • Individuals may place signs in car windows indicating that there are no valuables inside to help prevent theft.
    • Crimes are not currently increasing along the 16th St. Mall or nearby downtown properties.
    • You can reference the map included on Slide 3 of the presentation linked here to see data on reported business burglaries. 
  • Crimes of opportunity are increasing due to many factors, including sources of meals that typically serve vulnerable populations like churches or community centers, who have cut back as part of COVID-19 prevention.
  • Due to current circumstances of relaxed prosecution, in many cases shoplifting cases are escalating to robberies when individuals are confronted about theft. 
    • The DPD guidance for employees that are placed in situations with potential shoplifters is to NOT confront the individual. 
    • Call 911 or DPD, the department has the resources and capacity to handle the situation with the necessary space that circumstances warrant.
  • Recently, large apartment complexes and mail rooms have been targeted for theft of recent package deliveries. After trucks make deliveries to mail rooms, individuals are grabbing the packages for entire buildings and living communities. 
    • To prevent this, DPD is asking that deliveries be delivered directly to individuals.
  • There has not been a significant increase in domestic violence cases as anticipated, and DPD is continuing to educate and share messaging on domestic violence concerns. 
  • DPD is anticipating to see a rise in mental health issues in coming weeks, and is working with clinicians to promote mental health throughout the Stay at Home order.
  • The mens’ new shelter at the National Western Complex is serving 750 individuals and at capacity. This shelter has relieved a lot of the pressure of vulnerable populations on downtown Denver.
  • DPD is working with the Department of Public Health and Environment and the Denver Fire Department to develop a plan for walk-throughs and health orders for homeless encampments.
  • DPD remains diligent in managing the safety of officers.

Beth Moyski, Vice President of Special Districts for the Downtown Denver Partnership, concluded the briefing with a presentation on the Business Improvement District (BID) Private Security COVID-19 Plan. Key takeaways from her presentation include:

  • The clean and safe teams are continuing to provide upkeep and security services to help make the transition out of the Stay at Home order clean, safe, and smooth.  
    • The BID security has increased patrols to ensure closed businesses are being monitored.
    • The team is practicing social distancing and wearing personal protective gear.
    • The priority is to provide a safety presence that can help educate, advise and connect people to services.
    • Overnight clean teams shifted to working days in order to disinfect high-touch amenities and surfaces in the public realm with increased frequency.

For any security questions, BID members may call 303-704-5369.

Join us for next week’s safety briefing with Commander Sanchez on April 22 at 9:00 AM. Click here to register.

*How to protect your property during this time

  • Ensure the business is well-lit and eliminate places for criminals to hide near the building.
  • Lock all doors and windows when closed or away from the business. Install double cylinder deadbolts where possible, securing all points of entry, such as gates, fences, roof access, etc.
  • Remove cash from registers and leave the register open at the close of business and secure valuables or merchandise out of sight when closed.
  • Post signs outside your business letting criminals know there isn’t money in the register or safe, and keep track of inventory by marking items or logging serial numbers.
  • Remove any valuables or inventory away from windows.
  • If you are able, increase private security patrols around your facility.
  • Start or join a Business Watch Program to build relationships with neighboring business owners.
  • Install an alarm or surveillance system.
  • Contact your local Denver Police District for a business safety assessment