Calgary, AB,

Media Availability: CPS re-launches 9 p.m. Routine in response to seasonal crime trends

With more than 24,000 car prowlings and break and enters combined in Calgary in a one-year period, we are asking citizens to remember the 9 p.m. Routine to help secure their property and belongings every night before going to bed.

Between March 2020 and March 2021, there have been 19,684 car prowlings and 4,396 break and enters reported to Calgary police.

The 9 p.m. Routine is a campaign that began in Pasco County, Florida and is now used by police agencies across North America to remind citizens to protect themselves and their property. The Calgary Police Service first launched its 9 p.m. Routine in 2018 and is reminding citizens of its importance as we head into the summer months.

“With warmer weather comes crimes of opportunity,” says Sergeant Nick Wilsher of the Calgary Police Service Crime Prevention team. “It’s easy to leave windows open when it gets hot out or leave valuable items in our backyards or in our cars overnight. There are simple steps we can all take to minimize the opportunity for thieves and other offenders to commit certain crimes.”

By the numbers:

  • B&E numbers for March 2020 – March 2021
    • Total – 4,396
    • Residential – 1,791
    • Other (shed/garage etc.) – 2,605

Of the 4,396 break and enters, 1,043 occured during the daytime, 2,140 occured during the night time and 1,123 occured during an undetermined time frame. 

  • Car prowling numbers for the same time period
    • Total – 19,684
    • Daytime – 4,724
    • Night-time – 7,541
    • Undetermined time frame – 7,419

“Car prowlers usually count on crimes of opportunity and will repeatedly check car doors in parkades, parking lots and on streets for ones that are unlocked, especially if there’s valuable items in plain view,” says Sergeant Nick Wilsher. “We are encouraging citizens to always lock their vehicles, even if parked at home, and to remove all personal items every night.”

The routine recommends:

  • Removing valuables from vehicles, including wallets, purses and mail. If your personal information is stolen, it can be used fraudulently.
  • Ensuring vehicles are locked, windows are closed and if possible, parked in a garage.
  • Closing garage doors and windows.
  • Locking any person-doors in the garage, including those leading into a house.
  • Checking that all house doors – front, back, side and garage – are locked.
  • Ensuring all windows are shut.
  • Turning on an exterior light.

We encourage anyone who is a victim of a car prowling, break and enter or other property crime to report the incident to police as quickly as possible so that important evidence can be collected quickly, and each crime thoroughly investigated.

Citizens can report crimes to the Calgary Police Service at 403-266-1234. Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers through either of the following methods:

 TALK: 1-800-222-8477