Call the Police if You See One of These Outside Your House in South Carolina!

South Carolina, with its beautiful beaches, charming historic districts, and friendly communities, offers a desirable place to live. However, like any other state, vigilance is key to maintaining a safe environment. While not every unusual sight necessitates a call to the police, certain situations demand immediate attention to deter potential crimes and ensure the safety of yourself and your neighbors. This blog post will explore some red flags that warrant calling the police in South Carolina, providing you with the knowledge to make informed decisions and contribute to a safer neighborhood.

Unfamiliar Vehicles Loitering

Unfamiliar vehicles parked outside your house for extended periods can be a significant cause for concern. Statistics from the FBI reveal that a staggering 60% of burglaries involve some level of pre-planning, often marked by unusual vehicles casing neighborhoods Here’s what to watch out for:

  • Vehicles parked for extended periods: A car parked outside your house for an unreasonable amount of time, especially when there’s no apparent activity (like waiting for someone), could be a sign of someone scouting the area.
  • Multiple occupants acting suspiciously: If a vehicle has multiple occupants who seem to be taking turns getting out and peering around the neighborhood, it’s a red flag.
  • Vehicles with obscured plates: Be wary of vehicles with tinted or covered license plates. Legitimate visitors are unlikely to try to hide their identification.

What to Do:

  • Trust your gut: If something feels off about a vehicle, it probably is. Don’t hesitate to call the police.
  • Gather details: If possible, note down the vehicle’s make, model, color, and license plate number. Descriptions of the occupants can also be helpful.
  • Don’t confront: Do not approach the vehicle or its occupants. Your safety is paramount.
  • Report: Call the police and report the suspicious activity.


Let’s say you live in a quiet Charleston suburb. You notice a beat-up van parked across the street for over an hour. Two individuals take turns getting out, walking around the block slowly, and peering into windows. This scenario warrants a call to the police. Provide a detailed description of the van, occupants (if possible), and their behavior.

More News:  GBI seeks to solve cold case of 1988 murder of man in Milledgeville

Unmarked Delivery Vehicles

The rise of online shopping has led to a surge in delivery services. While marked delivery trucks are a common sight, unmarked vehicles claiming to make deliveries should raise a red flag. Here’s why:

  • Legitimate delivery companies typically have branded vehicles and uniformed personnel. An unmarked van with someone acting suspiciously might be involved in package thefts or other criminal activities.
  • Porch pirates: These individuals target packages left on doorsteps. Unmarked vans could be used to steal packages before homeowners even realize they’ve arrived.

What to Do:

  • Be cautious of unmarked vehicles: If an unmarked van pulls up to your house claiming to make a delivery you weren’t expecting, don’t open the door.
  • Verify the delivery: Ask for identification and contact the delivery company directly to confirm the legitimacy of the delivery. Most companies allow you to track packages online.
  • Install a security camera: A doorbell camera can deter porch pirates and provide valuable footage if a theft occurs.


Imagine you live in a busy Greenville neighborhood. You hear a knock on the door and see an unmarked van parked outside. A person claims to have a delivery for you, but you weren’t expecting anything. Don’t answer the door. Instead, ask for identification and contact the delivery company to verify. If they seem hesitant or can’t provide verification, call the police.

Individuals Checking Doors and Windows

One of the most blatant indicators of potential burglary is someone checking the security of your doors and windows. Here’s what to look out for:

  • People trying to jiggle doorknobs or peek through windows: This behavior suggests they’re looking for easy entry points.
  • Individuals casing the house: If someone walks around your property suspiciously, taking note of entry points and security measures (cameras, alarms), it’s a red flag.
More News:  Skimmer spotted at LaPlace Walmart: 'This case is growing rapidly'

What to Do:

  • Don’t confront: Do not approach the individual. Your safety is the priority.
  • Observe from a safe distance: If possible, try to get a description of the person, their clothing, and any distinguishing features. Note down the time and location of the incident.
  • Call the police: Report the suspicious activity immediately. The faster the police respond, the higher the chance of apprehending the suspect.

Forced Entry Attempts

While the above scenarios involve potential crimes, there are situations where a crime is actively in progress. Here’s what to do if you witness a forced entry attempt:

  • Don’t intervene: This is a dangerous situation. Your safety is paramount. Call 911 immediately.
  • Provide clear details: When calling 911, describe the situation as accurately as possible. Mention the number of individuals involved, their descriptions, and the type of forced entry being attempted (breaking a window, forcing a door).
  • Lock yourself in a safe room: If possible, lock yourself and your family in a secure room with a sturdy door and wait for the police to arrive.
  • Leave the house if safe to do so: If you can safely escape the house unseen, do so and call 911 from a neighbor’s house or a public phone.


You live in a quiet Columbia neighborhood and hear a loud crash from downstairs. You peek out your window and see someone breaking into your back door. This is a critical situation. Don’t try to be a hero. Immediately call 911 and describe the situation in detail. Lock yourself in a safe room and wait for the police.

People Acting Erratically

While not all erratic behavior is criminal, it can be a cause for concern, especially if it involves threats to personal safety or property damage. Here are some examples:

  • Individuals yelling or arguing on the street, especially late at night: This could be a sign of domestic violence or another altercation.
  • People vandalizing property: This includes spray painting graffiti, breaking windows, or damaging cars.
  • Someone acting strangely or irrationally: This could be a mental health crisis or someone under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
More News:  During Police Chase, New Orleans Teen Dies In Fiery Crash, Passenger Saved

What to Do:

  • Assess the situation: If you feel threatened or unsafe, call the police immediately.
  • Trust your gut: If something feels off, it probably is. Don’t hesitate to err on the side of caution.
  • Don’t intervene: Don’t try to get involved in the situation yourself. Let the police handle it.


You’re walking your dog in a quiet Myrtle Beach neighborhood at dusk. You see a group of teenagers yelling and throwing objects at a parked car. This behavior is concerning. While it might be a prank, it could also escalate into violence or property damage. Call the police and report the activity, providing a description of the individuals and their location.

Additional Tips for Staying Safe in South Carolina

  • Get to know your neighbors: Building relationships with your neighbors fosters a sense of community watch. Look out for each other’s homes and report suspicious activity.
  • Invest in a home security system: Security systems with visible cameras and alarms can deter criminals and provide peace of mind.
  • Keep your doors and windows locked, even when you’re home: Opportunistic thieves often target unlocked homes.
  • Trim bushes and trees around your windows: Overgrown landscaping provides hiding spots for potential burglars.
  • Leave lights on when you’re away: This creates the illusion that someone is home and deters criminals.
  • Be aware of your surroundings: Pay attention to what’s happening in your neighborhood and report any suspicious activity to the police.


By following these tips and being aware of the red flags mentioned above, you can significantly improve your home security and contribute to a safer neighborhood in South Carolina. Remember, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. When in doubt, call the police. Their prompt response could deter a crime and protect your home and family.

Avatar photo
MBS Staff
Articles: 8113

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *