Tag Archives: PROFeature

Tuffy has the security products you need to stay safe on patrol.

Tactical equipment demands tactical storage

For police officers out on patrol, squad cars and tactical SUVs are both their home and office. That's why Tuffy Security Products offers a full line of security accessories to help police officers organize and protect their belongings and equipment – both personal and professional – every day.

Lockable storage console
For smaller items like documents, a lockable storage console can keep your belongings safe while allowing them to remain portable and accessible. 

Laptop lockbox 
As one of your primary information assets, it's essential that you keep your laptop safe and secure. A laptop lockbox will not only protect your computer from theft, but the padded interior and durable construction will help guard it from damage. The lockbox will cost you just $190, while replacing your laptop will usually run you $800 or more.

Tactical security lockbox/drawer
It's essential to keep your tactical equipment secure, but you also need to access it at a moment's notice. A lockbox with a gear drawer is the perfect solution, as it's both incredibly safe and infinitely customizable. A lockbox with a custom gear draw runs at just under $2,000, but it will protect equipment like your $575 Remington Model 870 Express Tactical Shotgun, a Colt Advanced Law Enforcement Carbine – worth about $1,700 – and your Point Blank Dragon Fire Body Armor, worth $2,350, keeping them safe from theft and damage.

Conceal carry tote
Though you may feel safer keeping your firearm within reach at all times, it's also important to make sure it's secure. A conceal carry tote is the perfect solution for this. The tote will run you just $129, which is a steal, especially when compared to the average $600 it would cost to replace your standard issue pistol. 

Do you have a place to keep your gun safe?

Considerations when choosing a gun safe

If you are a gun owner, there are few things as important as safety. Aside from keeping yourself and those around you safe from injury by following the local laws, rules and regulations, it's also essential that you keep your firearm secured when it is not in use. One of the best ways to do this is by keeping a handgun lockbox or safe in your home, vehicle or wherever you store your firearm. However, not all firearms are created equal. Here are some tips for picking out the best and most secure gun safe for you:

Buy the correct size for your needs
If you only own 9mm pocket pistol, it's unnecessary to own a safe the size of a medium-sized car when a smaller portable safe will do the trick. On the other hand, if you own a small arsenal, you'll need something large enough to store everything securely. There are a few extra considerations you should make when picking out the size of your new safe. Think about both where you're going to put it and whether you expect your collection to grow in the near future. If you have an entire section of your basement dedicated to your firearms and plan to purchase additional guns in the future, go ahead and pick something out that's a bit bigger than you need right now and fill it up as you pick up more.

Consider different locks
Depending on who is in your house and how concerned you are about someone trying to access your firearms, you may need a heavy-duty lock or just a basic one. If there has been a string of thefts in your area or you are concerned about break-ins, there are much more advanced options, including fingerprint scanners and other digital locks. Because these can get expensive in a hurry, in most cases, a safe with both a combination and key should do the trick.

Look at steel thickness and fire resistance
No matter how sophisticated your lock is, it won't do  you any good if the steel of the body or the door is not strong enough. Avoid any metal that can bend easily, especially doors that aren't sturdy, as they can easily render the lock ineffective. Make sure the hinges of the door are on the inside so they cannot be tampered with. Aside from keeping others away from  your guns, your safe should also serve to protect your firearms from fire and water in the case of an emergency. When picking out a safe, look for one that can stand temperatures well over 1,000 degrees – which is how hot your house will get if it's on fire – for at least a half-hour. Similarly, your safe should be water resistant in the case of a flood. 

A Northern California car thief is finally behind bars.

Auto burglar finally behind bars

A man who broke into more than two dozen cars in Northern California has finally been arrested. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Vernon Rayshaun Evans-Carmichael, 22, was taken into custody in January facing 27 felony charges of burglary and grand theft.

Police told the source that Evans-Carmichael has been breaking into cars for at least six months. He was initially arrested in October but was able to post bail at that time. Since his release, he has broken into cars at two separate locations before getting arrested a second time. He is currently being held in a Santa Clara jail on $350,000 bail.

Los Altos Police Agent Mark Thompson told the Los Altos Town Crier that, in addition to the initial felony charges, Evans-Carmichael the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office also filed for four additional burglary and two more grand theft charges. These were for several auto burglaries that he allegedly committed in mid-January.

Evans-Carmichael's M.O.
According to the Chronicle, Evans-Carmichael generally targeted parked rental cars by smashing the windows. In the most recent car thefts, he stole electronics like laptops and camera equipment, which appears to be another pattern in his thefts.

For example, on Jan. 14, the Palo Alto police reported nine cars – seven of which were rentals – with smashed windows and electronics stolen from them, reported the Town Crier. At the time, the evidence turned up by the investigators pointed to Evans-Carmichael, who was also wanted for an outstanding bench warrant. He was then arrested on Jan. 16 in Contra Costa County and turned over to the Palo Alto police, where he was booked with another 17 felony charges.

Though Evans-Carmichael is currently behind bars, police are still warning area residents that similar thefts have continued. As recently as Jan. 27, eight vehicles were burglarized in a similar manner in downtown Palo Alto.

It seems that rental cars are a primary target, so those with "clear markings" that show the rental company logo or other indications that it is a leased car should be especially cautious. Police also stress the importance of not leaving valuables out on car seats or other place that are easily spotted from outside a vehicle.

"It's a crime of opportunity," Thompson said. "They're obviously just looking for anything they can take that is in plain view."

Auto security
The Evans-Carmichael burglaries shine a light on the importance of proper security. Though you may feel that your valuables are safely secured in your car, a single smashed window can lead to the theft of your electronics or firearm. When traveling, it is especially important that you take the proper steps to keep your items safe so you aren't stuck hundreds of miles from home with no phone or cash. Because of this, be sure you are taking every possible step to ensure your belongings are safe while on the road. Invest in a portable safe, which is large enough to fit a hand gun, small electronics or other valuables, but small enough to take with you in the car. Look for one that features a cord that allows you to anchor it to the vehicle.

When it comes to electronics, be sure to use laptop locks. These will not only protect the computer from theft, but will also protect it from damage sustained from the jarring movement that comes with travel. Again, find a laptop security box that features a padlock mounting point so it can be secured to the vehicle. 

Taking these steps will keep your belongings safe in case of a break in, and will have the added bonus of  discouraging someone from attempting to rob your car in the first place.

Far too often, weapons are stolen from police cruisers.

The importance of securing police gear

While it seems like common sense for police officers to make securing their weapons a priority, there have been far too many incidents where a lapse in judgment or an unlucky break has resulted in firearms being stolen from their vehicles. 

In July, Police Chief Steve Annibali of the Arroyo Grande Police in California, had his unmarked police cruiser parked outside of his home. According to The Tribune, a San Luis Obispo County local news outlet, sometime during the night, an unidentified criminal smashed the window of the car and stole Annibali's gun, ammunition, ID and police badge. These items were all stored under the backseat in a bag.

Several months later, in Oxford, Ohio, an unnamed officer with the local police department left his AR-15 in the back seat of his unmarked squad car overnight. He told local Fox affiliate WXIX that he had intended to move it to his trunk the following morning, but instead found his window broken and the rifle stolen. 

"My car has tinted windows and was parked in my driveway," the officer said in the police report, according to WXIX. "It is unknown if the person who [took] my shotgun was familiar with me being an officer."

Keeping police gear secure
Whether they leave their patrol cars at the police station or parked in their driveway, it is essential that all departments and individuals take every step to ensure the safety of their firearms. The frequency of theft of these weapons is far too common, especially when there are simple steps that can be taken to secure them. 

All police officers should have a portable safe in their patrol cars at all times. These are perfect for storing hand guns, ammunition, badges and IDs in their vehicles. It's important to select one that features a steel security cable so it can be anchored to the car. 

A lockable storage box is another essential item for patrol car storage. These can be kept in the trunk or back seat of a car, and have enough space to stage larger items that officers have to keep on them at all times, such as police tactical gear

With the proper storage techniques, weapons are kept out of sight of any passers by, lessening the chance that an officer will wake up in the morning to find their cruiser ransacked or damaged.

Is your patrol car organized?

Keeping your patrol car organized

As a police officer, you may spend hundreds of hours each month in your patrol car. Just like your personal vehicle, it’s easy to let the mess take over, but a few of these tips will help make sure your car is kept tidy while equipment, paperwork and firearms are secured:

Lock down firearms
The importance of keeping your firearm secure cannot be overstated. Police gear needs to be both well-fortified and easily accessible in case you have to access it quickly. In order to accomplish this, consider installing a gun rack. When picking one, however, make sure you get one that is specifically designed for your firearm. For example, a patrol rifle will not fit properly into a shotgun rack, leaving you vulnerable to theft and making it more difficult to access in an emergency. There are a few different options when it comes to laying out your firearms, so choose the one you are most comfortable with. These can include mounting guns between the seats vertically or horizontally – depending on whether you have a cage or shield – or vertically near the dash.

Aside from your cab, there is plenty of police tactical gear that has to be stored in your trunk, but more on that later.

Clean out your cab
When you spend 8-plus hours each day in your car, it’s easy to make it feel a bit like home. You may leave personal effects around or some paperwork here or there. These days, keeping your cab organized is more important than ever due to all of the gadgets that modern patrol cars have – mobile digital terminals, laptops, radios, video systems or radars, just to name a few. You may find that, once you get your car organized and give everything a proper place, your daily tasks can become easier. Invest in organizers – there are some that attach to the passenger seat for easy access. They will have slots for report forms, ticket books, reference materials, blank and completed citations, and writing utensils. There are also carriers available that can hold a flashlight, extra ammunition, maps and anything else you need during your day-to-day duties.

Tackle the trunk
There are few places in a car that can collect junk as quickly as the trunk of a car can. For personal vehicles, this can just be a minor inconvenience. However, for patrol cars, a disorganized trunk can lead to lost or damaged equipment and slow response to emergencies. Depending on the make and model of your patrol car, you have a few options when organizing your trunk. The famous Ford Crown Victoria, for example, manufactured a trunk organizer to make it a bit easier for officers, but not all cars have that option. There are plenty of trunk organizers available on the market, so consider your needs while picking one. A lockable storage box or security drawer will ensure that the weapons are kept secure, and well-designed locks still allow for quick access in an emergency.

Police work doesn't stop because it's cold outside.

Staying safe on patrol in the winter

We all know that police work doesn’t stop just because the temperature has dropped, so here are a few tips to stay safe and comfortable while you’re on patrol during the winter:

Prepare your car

You never know what the weather is going to do, nor do you know what any given day may hold. Because of that, you need to make sure your vehicle is ready for whatever you throw at it. Take your tires, for example. The last thing you need is to lose traction while on patrol. Depending on what neck of the woods your division is in, you may need to carry tire chains in your car during the winter. These attach to your wheel in order to give your tires more traction. You may also consider studded tires or those specifically designed for winter driving.

Then, there’s your battery. We all know that winter is the time that your car has the most trouble starting because the cold weather keeps your engine from turning over or kills the battery. Interestingly, however, the frigid temperatures are usually not actually draining the battery itself. Instead, it’s preventing a chemical reaction from occurring that discharges the power. Because of this, swapping out the battery in your car for the spare one in your trunk isn’t going to help at all. Instead, what you have to do is keep the area from getting too cold in the first place. There are battery blankets available that will help you accomplish this.

Keep yourself warm

As a police officer, it can be tough to know how insulated you’ll have to keep yourself during the bitter winter months. If you’re outside directing traffic in 20-degree weather, you’ll definitely need to layer up. However, you don’t want to wear so much clothing that you overheat once you get back to the station or to your patrol car. Layers are going to be your best bet, as you will be able to adjust your clothing depending on what your situation requires. Consider making an investment in a good pair of thermal long underwear or socks – the higher end products are usually worth the extra cost. Be sure to always avoid cotton, especially if there is snow, slush or rain in your future. Once cotton gets wet, it stays wet. If you’ve ever had to spend the day in wet socks, you know how unpleasant it can be. Always make sure you have extra socks and other layers handy – you never know when you’ll have to don or shed layers to keep yourself comfortable.

Always remember weapons safety

Don’t let the cold weather be an excuse for not keeping your weapons secured at all times. There’s a good chance you’ll have some extra stuff to lug around in your patrol car during the day, whether it’s those snow chains or rock salt or extra blankets. This makes winter an important time to get your police gear organized. Keeping a lockable storage box in your car, for example, can not only keep everything secure, but can also help you stay organized so you can access whatever you need quickly and easily.