Following string of violent incidents, Overland Park police provide tips on safety and crime prevention

Police Chief Frank Donchez spoke at last week’s community meeting on violent crime in northern Overland Park.

When the Overland Park Police Department invited the public last week to discuss recent violent activity near 79th Street and Grant, officers shared safety tips to help the community with crime prevention.

Police Chief Frank Donchez advised the audience to “know your neighbors” and get connected to the neighborhood, and to visit with each other and pay attention to what’s going on.

Donchez also advised the public to download the Nextdoor app and connect with their neighborhood through the social media platform.

Furthermore, the police rely on residents to report suspicious activity or crime as soon as possible. Police welcome anonymous tips submitted via the TIPS hotline at 816-474-TIPS or by connecting with the department through Neighbors, a social media platform.

Police also urged residents to protect themselves against “crimes of opportunity.” For example, many vehicle thefts this winter occurred because a vehicle was left running and unoccupied.

Donchez recommended that parents should keep an eye out for their children’s safety. Families should ask for help if they observe any suspicious or strange behavior or unusual activity on their children’s social media, especially if it relates to drug use, he added.

Finally, if anyone has any questions or concerns about interactions about police activity, officers asked to call the department’s non-emergency number at 913-895-6300.

“We need your help,” Captain James Sutterby said. “You’re our eyes and ears. It’s like having another 100, 150 detectives in the room.”