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Terrorism Awareness for Citizens

The security of the Village of Wheeling depends greatly on citizen involvement. No Illinois law enforcement agency can effectively protect life and property without the support and cooperation of the citizens they serve. The Wheeling Police Department needs your help in countering terrorism. Much like our Neighborhood Watch program, we ask you to be our eyes and ears. Reporting of suspicious activity can help disrupt the terrorist planning cycle. Terrorists are trained to "blend in" and assimilate to their surroundings. Most terrorist's acts are well organized and well planned. Terrorists will conduct training, surveillance and "dry runs" prior to commission of a terrorist act. They like to strike at government and civilian targets in an effort to instill fear. Although it is the intent of the terrorist to instill fear in you, it is your vigilance that the terrorist fears most. Reports can be made any time by dialing  9 - 1 - 1.

When recording the essential details utilize the following guide: 
     - Who did I observe? 
     - What specifically did I see? 
     - Where did I observe the specific behavior?
     - When did I observe the specific behavior?
     - Why do I think the behavior is suspicious?

There are three elements in reporting a description to the police:    
     - Accuracy (most important)
     - Speed
     - Completeness

Tips on Giving a Description For a person: 
     - Sex
     - Race 
     - Age (approximate) 
     - Height (approximate)
     - Weight (approximate; use 10lb. blocks)
     - Build (medium, heavyset, thin, etc.)
     - Hair (color, length, include facial hair)
     - Complexion (light, dark, ruddy, olive. etc.) 
     - Eyes (color, glasses)
     - Peculiarities (scars, tattoos, missing limbs, etc.)
     - Clothing (from head to toe, style, defects)
     - Weapons (if any) - Method of escape (direction, vehicle, etc.)

For a Vehicle:
     - Year, make and model
     - Body type (2 door, 4 door, van, SUV, etc.)
     - Passengers (number of people in vehicle)
     - License Plate (most important)
     - Damage or anything unusual (logos, etc.) - Color

We need you to:
     - Remain alert and be aware of everyday activities in your neighborhood. Take notice of unusual behavior.
     - Report any unattended backpacks, suitcases or packages left in inappropriate locations.
     - Encourage the involvement of family, friends and neighbors.   
     - Take precautions when traveling. Do not accept packages from strangers. Do not leave luggage unattended.
     - Learn where emergency exits and stairways are located.
     - Think about how to evacuate a building or congested public area in a hurry.
     - Be aware of what is going on around you at home and while you are away.

Suspicious Activity In the event you become aware of suspicious activity: 

     - Do not take direct action
     - Do not confront the individual; and
     - Do not reveal your suspicions.
     - Do record as many details as possible; and
     - Do notify the appropriate authorities as soon as possible.
     - Do become involved in Neighborhood Watch. Neighbors working together with police and other emergency
       personnel, observing and reporting incidents, conditions and crime in their neighborhoods.

Ways to Improve Observation Skills 

     - Employ good listening skills
     - Do not let personal feelings interfere with the incident
     - Look at the entire situation before making a judgement
     - Watch for non-verbal communications signs
     - Use feedback to obtain and verify information and observations
     - Observe and report - Do not become personally involved

More Terrorism Links

     - Shelter in Place from the American Red Cross
     - Federal Emergency Management Agency
     - Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) 410-265-8080       


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The Village of Wheeling
2 Community Boulevard
Wheeling, IL 60090
Mon ~ Fri    7am ~ 5pm
Ph: (847) 459-2600
Fax: (847) 459-9692

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