SHERMAN, TX-Your holiday guests may be gone but you could be inviting some unwanted company into your home without knowing it.
After opening lots of presents Christmas day, many of us throw gift wrap and boxes into our trash bins out on the curb, but the packaging can show everyone, including criminals, what's inside your home. I spoke with a local police officer about how you can keep burglars from stealing your Christmas cheer.
After Sherman resident Barbara Rowee wraps Christmas presents with care, she takes extra care throwing out the packaging.
"You worry at Christmas time, I think everyone worries at Christmas time. I try not to, I try to break down my boxes," she said.
That's why she was especially concerned when she noticed one of the workers renovating her house had rolled her garbage bins out to the curb, filled to the brim with the packaging of her grandchildren's presents.
"I would've waited. I would've waited til trash morning or real late before trash morning, Wednesday night. But my worker thought he was doing me a favor when he finished up here today so he put my cans out early," she said.
"What you don't want to do is set it out on the curb several days prior. If you have garbage pick up once a week, what you don't want to do is set that out there where anybody can see it driving by for several days."
Sherman police department's Sgt. Bruce Dawsey said it's important that residents don't openly advertise what they got for Christmas because boxes of any sort can indicate what is inside your home.
"Your best bet is to break those boxes down and place them in the recycle cans. Or if you don't have a recycle bin, you can take em to a recycle location or if nothing else, break them down and put them in a black plastic bag or something you can't see through," he said.
Now that Rowee knows the risks of leaving her trash out in the open, she said she will take them off the curb.
"I think I'm gonna put them back. With maybe my neighbor's help I'm gunna put them back," she said.
Sgt. Dawsey also said make sure to list serial numbers and model numbers of your high dollar items just in case someone makes off with it. That way, it increases the likelihood of its return and recovery. And if you see any suspicious activity or vehicle in your neighborhood, call local law enforcement.