Darien Police: Leaving Your Car Running is a Bad Idea & Can Be Against the Law

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We know the frigid weather is on its way, but never leave your car running while unattended.  With the cold gripping much of the nation, thousands of drivers are starting their cars and leaving them idling for a few minutes while they warm up on cold mornings. 

— an announcement from Darien Police
The Bad Idea Part
It’s a bad idea even if you are planning to make just a quick stop somewhere. Many vehicle thefts are crimes of opportunity, and a person could decide to make off with your vehicle if they see that it is empty and has the engine running. The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) says that one out of every five stolen vehicles had keys in them, while nearly half of vehicles were unlocked when stolen. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, most of today’s cars do not require more than 30 seconds to warm up.  An idling car can burn as much as a half-gallon of gas in an hour, so turning the car off is more fuel efficient and causes less air pollution. The Against-the-Law Part
Did you know you might be violating the law?  In an effort to protect our air, environment and health, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) adopted a regulation in 2004 that prohibits vehicles of all kinds from unnecessary idling for more than 3 minutes.

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Offering Emergency Computer Help, Online Scammers Swindle About $1,800 from Darien Man

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A 76-year-old Darien man told police last week he was repeatedly victimized by online scammers with bogus offers of help with computer problems.

Darien police gave this account of the incidents after the man contacted police last Tuesday, Nov. 29. It appears that $1,837 was stolen by the scammers, but the man’s credit card company may reimburse him for some of the charges. The scam took place over a period of months, beginning on Aug. 5.


Darien Police: How to Identify Someone Scamming You, Especially if You’re a Senior

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Darien Police Department offers these tips to help you realize when someone’s trying to scam you, especially if you’re a senior:
As many senior citizens spend their retirement traveling with family, pursuing second careers or becoming more active in the community, con artists are creating devious schemes to prey on their accumulated wealth. Family Emergency Scams
Scammers may pose as relatives or friends, calling or sending messages to urge you to wire money immediately. They’ll say they need cash to help with an emergency — like getting out of jail, paying a hospital bill, or needing to leave a foreign country. Their goal is to trick you into sending money before you realize it’s a scam. Verify an Emergency
If someone calls or sends a message claiming to be a family member or a friend desperate for money:

Resist the urge to act immediately, no matter how dramatic the story is.

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Darien Police Offer Tips to Keep House Construction Sites Secure from Theft

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Darien police have some tips to make your home less likely to be burglarized, even if it’s being built or renovated. Here’s the Police Department’s announcement about what you can do:
In recent weeks this agency has received reports of burglaries occurring at homes under various stages of construction.  This is not uncommon for our area and often occurs during the overnight. Items such as newly installed kitchen appliances, copper gutters, power tools, and construction supplies have been stolen from sites often sustaining tens of thousands of dollars in losses. Homeowners and contractors should be aware that certain measures can be taken to minimize the chance of being victimized. First and foremost, when taking delivery of items, they should be very securely stored or the contractor should consider security services until such time that the items can be installed and or secured from theft.  The following six tips can help maintain a secure site:
1.      Post warning signs to keep unauthorized persons off the site
2.      Consider video monitoring
3.      Do not leave tools, equipment, or supplies visible or accessible
4.      Use only high-quality locks—never leave keys in locks, or leave locks in an open position
5.      Keep neighbors informed
6.    Provide for nighttime lighting
Please report theft or burglary immediately to the Darien Police Department at 203-662-5300.

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Eversource: Don’t Be Scammed — Our Employees Never Solicit Door-to-Door

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Eversource business and residential customers across Connecticut continue to be targeted by scammers employing myriad tactics to trick people out of their money or into providing personal financial information.  

Most recently, scammers have been going door-to-door, posing as Eversource employees or claiming to be a “representative” of the company. In light of this, the company is renewing a reminder to customers that its employees all carry proper identification and would never solicit door-to-door or over the phone on behalf of a third-party energy supplier. “If anyone suspects that someone is impersonating an Eversource representative, they should contact us immediately and report it to local police,” said Penni Conner, Senior Vice President and Chief Customer Officer at Eversource. “The key to stopping these scammers in their tracks is don’t panic, don’t pay and don’t provide any personal information.”


— an announcement from Eversource


Though electricity customers in Connecticut do have the option of choosing a competitive energy supplier, Eversource urges them to do their due diligence and check the validity of any company or offer being made.

State Police Have These Tips for Parents & for Teens Going to the Prom

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Connecticut State Police have some tips for parents to keep their teenagers safe on prom night, which is May 13 in Darien. “There is nothing more heartbreaking than for a trooper or police officer to knock on the door of your home and deliver the sad message nobody wants to hear ‘Your child is not coming home,'” state police said in a recent announcement. Here are the tips, from state police on Facebook:
Prom Tips

Know who your child is attending the prom with and obtain all cell phone numbers. Discuss the events ofr pre- and post-prom parties with your teen and with other parents. Talk with your teen about guidelines and a curfew.

Police Car

Darien Police: Don’t Fall for Overpayment Scam in Online Car Selling

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The Darien Police Department would like to warn residents about a scam that is targeting those attempting to legitimately sell a vehicle using various online services. When it comes time to buy a car, consumers are more empowered than ever thanks in large part to the Internet and its offerings of car reviews, online vehicle history reports, detailed car listings, and more. __________
— an announcement from the Darien Police Department
The Internet has also, unfortunately, given scammers a new venue to find auto buying and selling victims.
Recently a Darien resident advertised a vehicle for sale online, and once a buyer was located and a deal was reached, a check was mailed for almost twice the amount of the agreed price. The buyer (scammer) sent instructions that the overpayment was to be given to the “transport service” that would be picking up the car.  Thankfully our “would-be victim” saw this as a red flag.  Here is how it works:
 The overpayment scam:
A legitimate seller posts a car for sale. He or she is then contacted by a prospective “buyer” (really a scammer) who offers to send a cashier’s check immediately plus additional funds to cover shipment of the car overseas.