JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - The countdown to Christmas is on, and shoppers are making a mad dash to the stores.
The Jackson Police Department is also making its presence known at stores across the metro.
Operation Safe Shop is underway in the Capital City, giving an added layer of protection to those fulfilling Christmas lists.
Shoppers are hitting the stores this last weekend before Christmas looking for that perfect gift.
Jackson police are also there, on the lookout for anyone trying to spoil the holidays for shoppers.
The annual safety patrols put more law enforcement officers into shopping areas to keep an eye out for any criminal activity.
JPD commanders and lieutenants are conducting the patrols.
“Thank God, knock on wood, we have not had an auto burglary in our shopping areas where we’ve got Operation Safe Shop,” said Jackson police Chief James Davis. “Being visible but not only that these commanders and lieutenants are doing it along with traffic and DART."
Shoppers said they appreciate the presence of law enforcement when making their Christmas purchases.
“I prefer to go to places that have those blue lights,” said Denise Wissel of Jackson. “I love it. I am so grateful that they’re here, and it just feels safe."
“I always think the blue lights are good for business,” said Jackson resident Chuck Perkins. “They deter crime and that’s a good thing. I don’t mind shopping where I see lights.”
“Anytime you see police officers in the area, you automatically feel safer walking to your car, walking into the building, walking out. So certainly their presence has made everybody feel a lot safer,” said Jeff Altman of Brandon.
JPD suggests you put put your purchased items in your trunk as you continue to shop. They also suggest locking your vehicle doors and never leaving valuables in plain sight in your vehicle.
Always be aware of your surroundings when walking to and from the store; that means not talking on your cell phone.
Remember, if you see something suspicious, say something, and let an officer know to help JPD deter criminal activity.