Cop target '12 Crimes of Christmas'

Canterbury police are highlighting what they call the '12 Crimes of Christmas' to ensure the district stays safe this festive season.

The social media-based campaign began yesterday with a focus on party safety, urging party-goers to plan ahead, arrange safe transport home and look after themselves and their mates.

The crimes featured in the campaign aren't necessarily restricted to Christmas, but Canterbury prevention manager Richard Bruce said the aim was to ensure people did not become victims of crime over the holidays, or spend the festive season locked in a cell.

"This is a time when we are extra busy and stressed getting prepared for festivities and holidays, and have bigger social calendars.

"We are more prone to taking our eye off the ball, relaxing our security and giving opportunists a chance to take advantage.

Alcohol-fuelled crime, burglary, scams, drink-driving, family violence and holiday safety tips are some of the themes that will feature, along with simple steps to help make this Christmas a happy one.

"There's nothing worse than having the family's Christmas presents stolen out from under the Christmas tree, or having the holidays spoiled by crashes on the road.

"It's also a time of celebration, with people enjoying work parties, family get-togethers and summer barbecues with a few drinks - but unfortunately there's a minority of people that take it too far.

"When people have too much alcohol on board they're likely to make poor decisions and all too often we see them end up as offenders or victims of crime or crashes.''

The 12 Crimes of Christmas campaign will see crime prevention and safety messages posted daily on the Christchurch Police Facebook page, on each of the 12 days leading up to Christmas.

"Hopefully by reminding people of a few simple safety ideas we can reduce those risks and help people to have a safer and happier Christmas and New Year.''

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