Eyes in the Sky at Countryside Mall
Clearwater police officers and Pinellas County deputies are staffing a mobile surveillance tower at Westfield Countryside Mall today (Nov. 27).
CLEARWATER – The Clearwater Police Department and Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office are conducting a joint effort to enhance the safety of shoppers as the holiday shopping season kicks off on Black Friday.
Clearwater Police officers and Pinellas County sheriff’s deputies will be staffing SkyWatch, a two-story mobile surveillance tower, beginning this morning (Nov. 27) at Westfield Countryside Mall in Clearwater. The tower gives a 360-degree view of the parking areas, which are expected to be jammed with holiday shoppers.
Clearwater officers will have an eye from the air for the first part of the day; deputies will man the tower the second half of the day. Clearwater Police will also have an enhanced presence at Countryside Mall and other popular shopping destinations. That will include officers on foot, on bicycles, in cars and atop the surveillance tower.
SkyWatch, obtained in 2012 through a Department of Homeland Security grant, is in the care and custody of the sheriff’s office but is available for use by all local law enforcement agencies.
Clearwater Police urge shoppers to always lock their cars doors – no matter what season it is. Eighty-two percent of all vehicle burglaries in the city occur in unlocked vehicles. It’s also important not to leave shopping bags, gifts and other valuables in your car where they are visible. They should be properly secured in the trunk.
Photo courtesy of the Clearwater Police Department.
Countryside Mall | Clearwater Police | Pinellas Sheriff | Black Friday | TB Reporter
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