KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Christmas may be over, but thieves are still on the prowl -- looking to get their hands on those holiday gifts.
"Never take for granted you won't become a victim because anybody can become a victim at any time, we know that -- police officers become victims of theft," Kanawha County Sheriff's Capt. Sean Crosier said.
In just a 24-hour period this week, Kanawha County Sheriff’s deputies responded to three home burglaries, three breaking-and-entering incidents and two thefts.
"Thieves know that people have purchased Christmas presents and many times, you know, with the electronics age they have a lot of expensive items, and of course thieves can turn those items very quickly at a local bar or to a local friend or whoever for some quick cash," Crosier said. "And, of course, it'll be able to support their drug habit."
To keep yourself from becoming a target, police say always keep those newly unwrapped, expensive gifts out of sight.
But if someone does break in, deputies say the best advice is to let the thieves know you’re onto them.
"And even yell, 'Hey, I've called 911 -- the police are on their way,' " Crosier said. "Moments later that thief is likely to run out of the house."
So be vigilant but not only for yourself. Deputies say keep an eye out for neighbors who may still be away for the holidays.
"Newspapers that haven't been picked up everyday -- that tells them the person is not home -- if their mailbox is full," Crosier said.