How you can help investigators identify what belongs to you in the event of a burglary

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LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Ala. – There were an estimated 8,975,438 property crime offenses in the U.S. in 2012, according to

The investigators responsible for finding the items stolen during those property crimes rely heavily on the victims knowing exactly what was taken.

The Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office wants you to know you can help in the process. It just takes a little time and effort.

Investigators want you to use a spreadsheet similar to this one to record descriptions of your property and keep it in a safe place. It can be in printed form or saved as a file you can access through email or cloud storage. There are also apps for property logs. If you’re relying on the paper form, investigators recommend you make two copies of the inventory list; one easily accessible and the other stored in a safety deposit box.

Property you should include in your inventory:

  • Appliances
  • Bicycles
  • Binoculars
  • Cameras
  • Camping gear
  • Car Stereo
  • Chain Saw
  • Clocks
  • Vehicles/Trailer
  • Electronics
  • Furniture
  • Cell Phone
  • Music Equipment
  • Power Tools
  • Printers
  • Speakers
  • Sporting Goods
  • Televisions
  • Tool Boxes
  • Computer/Laptop
  • Video Games/Devices
  • Firearms
  • Garden Tools

Not all items have serial numbers on them. Photo documentation of the items helps investigators know what they are looking for.

You should also have photo documentation of the following:

  • Antiques
  • Furs
  • Paintings
  • Collectibles
  • Jewelry