Home is where we feel the most comfortable, the place where we can strip down to our undergarments and sleep without fearing for our security. Meanwhile, our neighborhood is a familiar environment, a place where we collect significant memories, such as our lives’ different milestones, hardships, and victories.
But all these feelings of safety and delight can disappear in an instant if there’s a criminal next door.
A seemingly sketchy neighbor is one you shouldn’t underestimate. In most cases, your instincts are right when you feel off towards a certain person around your neighborhood. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have proof of their criminal activity; their behavior in general is just suspicious and inexplicably scary. Besides, chances are they’re wickedly skilled at hiding evidence of their illicit doings, so trying to find a trace of it may only lead you to harm.
Hence, if you start having an ominous feeling about your next-door neighbor, even if they’re nothing but nice to you, keep your guard up and have a reliable companion stay with you at all times. Don’t waste time brushing off your trepidation just because you don’t believe it’ll happen to you. Remember, John Wayne Gacy, a.k.a. “Killer Clown”, was once somebody’s next-door neighbor, too. The same were David and Louise Turpin, Ariel Castro, Ted Bundy, and more.
Signs That Your Neighbor Might be a Criminal
1. They’re wearing or carrying bloody clothing.
This would be the most obvious sign, and probably the least likely to show up. Unless you’re awake in the wee hours of the morning and happened to be looking out of your window.
It’s understandable that your instinct upon seeing a bloody neighbor would be fear. And if you’re friends with that person, you might even go out of your house to ask them what’s happened. But this might be a grave mistake, so instead, call the emergency hotline immediately.
2. They’re often loitering around schools, parks, or secluded areas.
If your kid tells you that they often see your neighbor around their school, or at the park, start being more vigilant. That could mean that your neighbor is a sex offender. While we don’t want to assume the worst of people immediately, loitering around places where kids frequent is rarely an indication of good moral character.
Another good way to tell if your neighbor is a sex offender is by teaching your kids about healthy boundaries. That way, if they tell you about another kid or an adult that played with them in an unsafe way, you’d be able to deduce whether the person in question has done it on purpose. And of course, supervise your kids when they play, even if they’re just at home with another kid.
3. The police are constantly present.
When you often see police LED light bars flashing in your neighborhood, it clearly means that there are plenty of crimes being reported from your area. It doesn’t necessarily mean that your next-door neighbor is the perpetrator, but still, be on your guard. If you receive word from another neighbor or the police that only one person seems responsible for all the crimes, there’s a chance that it’s your suspicious next-door fellow.
4. Your neighborhood’s crime rate is high.
As with the police’s constant presence, a highcrime rate doesn’t automatically make your next-door neighbor a criminal. But what it indicates is that the chances of a crime happening in your neighborhood are higher. Therefore, if you already find your next-door neighbor dodgy, consider renting out a different place, or reinforcing your home’s security system.
Pointers to Avoid Being a Victim
Some people avoid calling the police in fear that it’ll make them the criminal’s next target. But disregarding the signs of criminal activity can put other people’s lives in danger if they’re not already.
Therefore, if you notice the following acts or behaviors in your neighbor, keep yourself safe inside your home, and call the emergency hotline at once:
- Looking in a car or home
- Forcibly entering a car or home
- Running from a home
- Carrying a weapon
- Someone screaming from inside their home
- Walking around your neighborhood with an item that looks stolen
- Ringing your doorbell or knocking on your door without a reasonable explanation
- Parking strange vehicles on their property
- Keeping a clean car with damaged or dirty tags
Most importantly, secure your abode by using sturdy locks on your gates, doors, and windows. Install CCTV cameras on possible access points, and use an alarm system with concealed wiring. If you need to keep a spare key, choose a safe hiding place, not your doormat, garage, or anywhere obvious. Instead, consider putting it in a 35mm tin can, then bury it in a spot you can easily find.
Whether you live alone or not, be cautious of people introducing themselves as service personnel. Don’t let anyone inside if you didn’t ask for repairs or maintenance to be done. If they ask to make a call, make the call for them while they stay outside.
And to ease your loneliness and deter criminals, adopt a dog. Their barks will alert you, giving you a chance to defend yourself or call the police when needed.