CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Black Friday shopping seems to get earlier and earlier every single year, and this year is no different.
Thousands of shoppers will head to the malls on Thursday night. But it’s not just shoppers you’ll see if you’re going, police officers will be there in full force. They’re making their preparations now about how they will keep shopper safe.
“You might see a dirt bike around trying to make you feel safe walking to and from your car," said Captain Brian Sanders with CMPD.
That’s just part of their strategy to keep shoppers safe during one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
Police are increasing the number of patrol officers at the malls, and shopping outlets in Charlotte. Police tell us they’re using overtime shifts to bring in extra officers, and many bigger retail locations have hired off-duty officers for extra security.
“We want everybody to know is that we’re out there with them," said Sanders.
Police say crime prevention is a community effort, and it’s something you need to think of while shopping.
“Make sure you don’t carry too many packages at one time, take them out of your car, put them in your car and go back shopping," said Officer Blake Page. “Do yourself a favor, do us a favor. Close your door, lock your car, roll your window up and put these packages somewhere you can’t see them from outside the vehicle.”
For the rest of the holidays season, police warn to be extra careful with packages on doorsteps. And if you’re leaving town for the holidays, make sure your house is locked up.
“Lock your doors, your windows. Close that garage door. Make sure form the exterior you cant see anything valuable, electronics, Christmas presents, that kind of thing," said Paige.
Another reminder to keep you and others safe, if you’re out driving to the malls or other Thanksgiving get-togethers, don’t drive distracted, tired of drunk. Officers will be out on the roads, even on Thanksgiving.