While 2019 showed a larger number of thefts and burglaries at this current time compared to August 2020, the Dickinson Police Department confirmed that thefts and burglaries have started to become trending notions within the crime reports.

DPD Detective Sergeant Kylan Klauzer discussed the issue in a recent interview with The Dickinson Press.

"It’s been a plethora of things across the spectrum, from entries into garage/storage units, houses or vehicles," Klauzer said. "From one end of it, it’s very much continuing for us to try to get the community … getting them aware and cognizant of the crimes and opportunity. If things aren’t locked up, deadbolts aren’t shut and vehicles aren’t locked, things like that. There are many instances there where we do see people taking advantage of (others) because of that. Not taking the precautionary steps to lock it or lose it... Last week we had a victim in town that had his firearms stolen from his vehicle … it’s always ongoing and of course we’re in this state of an economic flux … Get your stuff secure and things like that and lowering your chances of someone coming in and seeing you as an easy target of some sorts."

DPD Captain David Wilke stated in an email to The Press, according to the reporting system, thefts and frauds are lower at this time of year than it was in 2019. As of August of 2019, a total of 429 cases were created, leading to 54 arrests and four juvenile arrests. As of August 2020, a total of 391 cases have been created with 27 adult arrests and four juvenile arrests.

However, Klauzer said authorities are beginning to see a slight trend in thefts being reported, specifically within the Dickinson area.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

"You can go from car shopping in purses and small valuables and such to the metals right now," Klauzer said. "Copper and the wire and things as such. There’s been a couple of big cases in the last several months related to that, to your guns and your firearms. It is across the spectrum and the smaller things that are more concealable are probably a little more common.

"Some people don’t even make the report on certain items because they’re small and sometimes they don’t realize that it’s stolen right away," he added. "But I always tell the citizens to make the report because you never know what could happen. It might not be this weekend, it might not be next week, but … a year later, maybe a year and a half later if we go through a garage or house that has a lot of stolen property in it, sometimes they get their property back."

As seen throughout the past cases, especially in the slight rise of thefts/burglaries, often it's because of an opportunity presenting itself to suspects. However, Klauzer said while the best thing to do is be mindful of the situations and lock up and make things difficult, sometimes the situation may just be unavoidable, depending on the suspect's interest.

"There also has been forced entries into all of the things that occur too," Klauzer said. "If you get somebody that is hell bent on … entering certain things and if those certain things give them the idea of thinking they have an opportunity to (break in) they’re going to go to whatever ends they can to try to make entry and steal whatever property they may specifically be looking for ... Sometimes these things are random too, they’re just hell bent on trying to get their hands on anything that is valuable to them."

Residents can help prevent the potential thefts and burglaries by taking key precautions with their belongings. Always being on alert, mindful of everyone around, especially in public areas in which purses and wallets could be seized. The securing of homes and garages, making sure locks are secured. Klauzer added deadbolts are a strong benefit in helping prevent thefts.

Installations of doorbell cameras can help keep a neighborhood safer with the help of being able to see multiple houses at once. Having well-lit areas or automated lights on houses and garages can also help prevent thefts. As said by Klauzer.

Klauzer and the entire DPD urge the community to stay focused and aware of the reports and stay mindful of their community.

"I just can’t stress enough from an investigative side, the majority of the crimes that are solved in our city are solved because of the citizens that are attentive and are paying attention towards their neighbors and seeing things that they know not to be normal in their neighborhood and the community in general," Klauzer said. "The more people we can continue to remind and get them situationally aware … the easier and the safer we’re going to be altogether."

Klauzer added the community can stay alert with the Badlands Crime Stoppers people can text 701-840-6108 or call 701-456-7754, or call 911 for emergencies.