We have prepared some basic information to assist you in protecting yourself against a variety of crimes. Have further questions? Don't hesitate to contact us.
Week Day Night
Walnut Creek Curfew
Walnut Creek Curfew
Drivers With Provisional License
From 11:00 pm to 5:00 am
Driving not allowed unless adult over
25 with a valid driver's license is in the vehicle.
From 11:00 pm to 5:00 am
Driving not allowed unless adult over
25 with a valid driver's license is in the vehicle.
Walnut Creek Police Department:
Emergency: 9-1-1 Direct- dial emergency and from cell phones: 925-935-6400 Non-emergency; or for messages to officers: 925-943-5844
District Attorney's Office:
The District Attorney is your legal representative in a criminal case, and will be prosecuting the person who victimized you. The District Attorney is committed to the safety and security of victims and witnesses. If you are pressing charges, and the offender or his friends are threatening or harassing you, or you just have questions about civil or criminal matters in general, you can call any of the following numbers for advice:
District Attorney- Victim/ Witness Program: 925-372-4521 District Attorney- Victim/ Witness Assistance- Central and East: 925-313-4170 District Attorney- Victim/ Witness Assistance- West County: 510-321-3201
If you need an experienced attorney for your divorce, child custody or support problems, or for a restraining order, contact any one of the following agencies. Fees vary, and some may be on a sliding scale, based on your ability to pay:
Contra Costa County Bar Association: 925-686-6900 Divorce Centers (Do-it-Yourself Divorce): 925-937-6320 Battered Women's Alternatives Legal Services: 925-676-3122
Shelter and Crisis Counseling:
If you need a place to stay, or advice about your immediate problems, contact any of the following agencies. Feel free to contact shelters which are located far from your home. You may be safer if you are harder to find.
WOMAN, Inc. (clearinghouse of all women's shelter status) 415-864-4777 Battered Women's Alternatives (BWA) 24 Hour Hotline: 888-215-5555 Battered Women's Alternatives (BWA) Legal Services 925-676-3122 Battered Women's Alternatives (BWA) Restraining Order Information 925-676-3122 A Safe Place (Oakland): 510-536-7735 Women's Refuge (Oakland): 510-547-4663 or 510-658-7231 Emergency Shelter Program (Hayward): 510-786-1246 SAVE (Fremont): 510-794-6055 La Casa de las Madres (San Francisco): 415-333-1515 Marin Abused Women's Services: 415-924-6616 San Mateo Women's Shelter: 415-342-0850 Tri-Valley Haven (Livermore): 925-449-5842 24-HOUR Counseling and Emergency Food: Central County: 284-CARE West County: 510-235-5244 South County: 833-8111 Bay Area Crisis Nursery (Concord): 685-8052 Teen to Teen Hot Line:
Kid Phone Warm Line:
Rape Crisis Center West County: 510-236-7273 Rape Crisis Center Central County: 798-7273
Counseling Services: Fees and services will vary.
Home, Health, and Counseling- Walnut Creek: 925-947-1811 Home, Health, and Counseling- Antioch: 925-427-0399 Home, Health, and Counseling- Richmond: 510-234-2787 REACH Project- Antioch: 925-754-3673 County Mental Health- Concord: 925-646-5480 County Mental Health- Pittsburg: 925-427-8110 County Mental Health- Richmond: 510-374-3061 For additional referrals, call: 925-930-8300
Battered Women's Alternatives- Men's Program: 925-676-2968 Marin Men's Hot Line 415-924-1070 The Center (Pleasanton) 925-462-5544
The Fraud and Forgery unit of the Detective Bureau is actively involved in specific follow-ups in certain cases of check forgery, identity theft, counterfeiting, and credit card theft. If you need to an initial police report of fraud or forgery with Walnut Creek PD, please call us at (925) 943-5844.
Types of Fraud
Non-Sufficient Funds/Account Closed Checks:
WCPD participates in the Contra Costa County District Attorney Bad Check Diversion Restitution Program, which has been organized to assist local merchants with bad check losses. The primary goal of the program is to obtain restitution for the victim without adding to the financial burden of the criminal justice system. First time bad check offenders are given the opportunity to avoid criminal prosecution by attending a mandatory intervention class and paying restitution. Such reports should be made directly to the Bad Check Diversion Restitution Program at 866-639-8093 FREE or Check Diversion Restitution
Fraud is generally defined as theft by false pretenses, including the suspect developing trust in the victim before the plan is executed. Most schemes have a common theme that requires "good faith" or "pre-tax" money to be given. Other types of fraud include:
- Internet auction fraud - This scheme involves the misrepresentation of a product advertised for sale on an Internet auction site, or non-delivery of merchandise.
- Credit card fraud - Through the unauthorized use of a credit or debit card, or card number, criminals fraudulently obtain money or property.
- Investment fraud - An offer using false claims to solicit investments or loans, or providing for the purchase, use, or trade of forged or counterfeit securities.
- Nigerian letter or "419" fraud - Named for the violation of Section 419 of the Nigerian Criminal Code, it combines the threat of impersonation fraud with a variation of an advance fee scheme in which a letter, e-mail, or fax is received by the victim.
Phishing is a scam in which you receive a fraudulent e-mail designed to steal your identity or personal information, such as credit card numbers, bank account numbers, and account passwords. The e-mail may state that your account has been compromised or that one of your accounts was charged incorrectly. The email will instruct you to click on a link in the e-mail or reply with your bank account number to confirm your identity or verify your account.
Legitimate companies never ask for your password or account number via e-mail. If you receive a phishing e-mail:
- Don't click on any links in the e-mail. They can contain a virus that can harm your computer. Even if links in the e-mail say the name of the company, don't trust them. They may redirect to a fraudulent website.
- Don't reply to the e-mail itself. Instead forward the e-mail to the Federal Trade Commission at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If you click on any links in the phishing e-mail or replied with personal information, contact the company directly to let them know about the email and ask to have fraud alerts placed on your accounts, new credit cards issued, and set new passwords.
Security in the home is vitally important, and is a matter of making your home more difficult and less attractive to break into.
Establish basic perimeter security:
- Lock doors, windows, garage doors, and fences.
- Exterior doors should have deadbolts.
- Sliding glass doors need a readily-removable securing bar or dowel to keep them from being pried open.
- Fence your yard and secure the gates if you can.
- Use heat or motion-sensitive lights to eliminate hiding places.
Create the lived-in look:
- Alternate lights on timers, have TV's and radios on while you are not home.
- It is helpful to find a trusted person to house-sit for you while on vacation. Almost every burglar knocks on the front door first to see if anyone answers.
Manage your property:
- Don't make it obvious you have just acquired new technology or electronics by leaving the boxes in front of your house. Cut them up and put them in the trash.
- Don't keep large amounts of cash or jewelry in a residence, or suggest to anyone that valuables might be there.
- In case property is stolen, it's best to keep an itemized list of your serialized property.
- Photograph jewelry items, and have them appraised.
- Critical, irreplaceable documents need to be in a safety deposit box.
- Never leave a vehicle parked unlocked, especially with the keys in the ignition.
- Never leave valuable property in plain sight in the vehicle.
- The safest place to leave a vehicle parked is in a locked garage. At other times, pick secure, well-lit places.
- Use a vehicle alarm.
This guide provides victims of identity theft with a basic checklist and the major resources to contact
Immediately call the fraud units of the three credit reporting companies — Experian, Equifax, and Trans Union. Report the theft of your credit cards or numbers. Ask that your account be flagged. Find out how long the fraud alert is posted, and how you can extend it if necessary. Ask credit bureaus to provide you with free copies every few months so you can monitor your credit. Check your credit report periodically, even if you are not a victim of identity theft. Federal law allows you to receive one free copy of your credit report each year from each of the major credit reporting companies.
Contact all creditors immediately with whom your name has been fraudulently used. Get replacement cards with new account numbers and monitor your mail and credit card bills for evidence of new fraudulent activity.
Report the crime to all police and sheriff’s departments with jurisdiction in your case. Give them as much documented evidence as possible. Request a copy of your police report, as credit card companies and banks may require you to show the report in order to verify the crime.
If you have had checks stolen or bank accounts set up fraudulently, put stop payments on any outstanding checks. Cancel your checking and savings accounts and obtain new account numbers.
If your ATM card has been stolen or compromised, get a new card, account number, and password. Do not use your old password.
Call the Social Security Administration to report fraudulent use of your Social Security number. As a last resort, you may want to change your number. The SSA will only change it if you fit their fraud victim criteria.
Sometimes, victims of identity theft are wrongfully accused of crimes committed by the imposter. If a civil judgment has been entered in your name for actions taken by your imposter, contact the court where the judgment was entered and report that you are a victim of identity theft. If you are wrongfully prosecuted for criminal charges, contact the state Department of Justice and the FBI.
Credit Reporting Bureaus
P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
Report fraud: Call (800) 525-6285 and write to address above
Order credit report: (800) 685-1111
Opt out of pre-approved offers of credit: (800) 556-4711
P.O. Box 1017, Allen, TX 75013
Report Fraud: Call (800) 301-7195 and write to address above.
Order credit report: (800) 682-7654
Opt out of pre-approved offers of credit and marketing lists: (800) 353-0809
P.O. Box 390, Springfield, PA 19064
Report fraud: (800) 680-7289 and write to Fraud Victim Assistance Division,
P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92634. Order Credit Report: (800) 916-8800
Opt out of pre-approved offers of credit and marketing lists: (800) 680-7293
Remember, if you have been denied credit, you are entitled to a free credit report. If you are a victim of fraud, be sure to ask the credit bureaus for free copies
Social Security Administration
Report fraud: (800) 269-0271. Order your Earnings and Benefits Statement: (800) 772-1213.
To remove your name from mail and phone lists:
Direct Marketing Association Mail Preference Service, P.O. Box 9008, Farmingdale, NY 11735
Telephone Preference Service, P.O. Box 9014, Farmingdale, NY 11735
To report fraudulent use of your checks:
CheckRite: (800) 766-2748
Chexsystems: (800) 428-9623
Equifax: (800) 437-5120
National Processing Co.: (800) 526-5380
TeleCheck: (800) 710-9898
- The Internet has become an integral part of our lives and has opened up a virtual world of information for anyone with a computer and an on-line connection. Children seem to have a fascination with computers and the Internet, because they are able to access more information from more sources more quickly than from any other medium. However, they need to learn how to protect themselves from the predators, cheats, and con artists that are lurking behind their screen. With a little bit of planning and appropriate adult supervision, children can explore and learn while essentially eliminating the dangers of being abused or exploited.
- Just like in a park or public place, a child's best defense is a sound value system and a plan. As they are ready, teach your children about exploitation, pornography, hate literature, and violence. Teach them what to do when something they see is troubling or bothersome to them.
- Set aside time to explore the Internet together. That way, you can set the examples of how suspicious messages or people are appropriately handled, and you may be better informed yourself.
- Monitor your children when they are on line. If your child becomes uneasy or defensive when you enter the room, it likely means that they are involved in something unusual or forbidden.
- Choose an Internet Service Provider that has parental control features, and learn how to use them. Or, you may purchase commercial blocking software to screen out sites by content and key words you find objectionable. Such blocking is very effective, and is already done by the Walnut Creek schools for the computers they have on campus.
- Tell children NEVER to give out personal information, such as address, telephone number, or their parent's name. They should NEVER send pictures of themselves to anyone they don't know, or that YOU have not met in person.
- Assume NOTHING about anyone you or your child may meet on line. Sexual predators and con artists can easily assume the on-line identity, vernacular, and apparent interests of a child of any age and sex in order to lure and entice their target to respond as they might to a real person. Unless you have met someone in person, what appears to be a chatty 12-year- old girl might actually be a 45-year-old male.
If you or your child comes across material that you find pornographic, threatening, or otherwise offensive, it might well be a violation of law. Save the material, and contact your local law enforcement agency. The Walnut Creek Police Department has forensic computer investigation facilities and experienced law enforcement personnel specifically trained to investigate computer crime, and in particular, computer crime focused on child abuse and exploitation.
Another resource is the National Center for Missing or Exploited Children. They function as a national clearinghouse for tips and leads regarding the sexual exploitation of children. You can call the 24-hour Child Pornography Tipline at 1-800-843-5678 FREE, or make your reports on-line at their website. They will compile and forward the information to the appropriate state, federal, or local law enforcement agency for action.
Ransomware is a type of malware installed on a computer or server that encrypts the files, making them inaccessible until a specific ransom is paid. If you are a victim or would like more information regarding ransomware please follow this link to a public service announcement by the FBI.
There are ways to protect yourself against hackers waiting to steal your information. You must have the proper security precautions in place. Cyber security is the practice of protecting your digital identity by detecting, preventing, and responding to attacks.
Being safe in our home, in our car, and in public is something that each of us should think about. Here are some useful tips for staying safe:
- Keep the garage door closed.
- Keep doors, windows, and screen doors locked. Put a metal or wooden dowel in sliding doors to prevent burglars from forcing the door open or lifting it off of the track.
- Keep the perimeter of your home well lit, including the backyard.
- Never leave clues that you are away on a trip. Have a neighbor collect mail and newspapers while you are away so delivered items do not accumulate.
- Never let strangers into your home.
- If someone at your door needs help, you can call 9-1-1 for them. Unless you know them, don't let them in.
- Don't give out personal information over the telephone to people you don't know.
- Keep firearms securely locked.
- Install an alarm system.
- Never hide your house key in a flower pot or under a mat. Do not hide your house key anywhere outside your residence.
In your car:
- Keep doors locked and windows up.
- Park in well lit areas.
- Do not keep personal belongings in your vehicle or in plain sight- it makes an easy target for criminals to break in and steal your belongings.
- Lock property in the trunk of the car if you cannot take it with you. Do not leave such items as your purse, a brief case, laptop, GPS or iPod unattended in your vehicle.
In public places:
- Travel on the public streets, and avoid short cuts and vacant lots.
- Walk in well lit areas.
- Walk with a friend or group of people.
- Be aware of what's going on around you.
Bicycle Lock Up Do's and Don'ts
- DO register your bike and/or tag your bicycle (and make note of the serial number).
- DO keep your bike locked at all times.
- DO lock your bike in a well lit area.
- DO lock your bike to an object that is securely bolted or cemented to the ground.
- DO create a snug fit with wheels and frame so that there is little room in the U-portion of the lock for thieves’ tools.
- DON’T lock your bike to itself, or to objects that can be easily cut.
- DON’T lock your bike in the same area all the time.
There are many common scams that target the elderly. These range from home repair schemes to fraudulent sweepstakes and contests. Here is a link to more information on these scams to hopefully help stop someone from falling victim to them.
Here are also some quick tips:
Home Repair Schemes:
- Beware of anyone soliciting work to be done to your home or vehicle. There are some criminals who pose as contractors, selling overpriced and unnecessary repairs.
- Only employ a licensed and reputable contractor to do.
- Never sign a contract for home repair unless you understand it.
- If it sounds too good to be true, it is! Beware of telephone or mail solicitation for money or investments, regardless of how official it may look. Official-looking call back numbers and mailing addresses can be hoaxes.
- Never give up personal information to people you don't know.
- Never send checks to people you don't know.
- Never give blank checks, deposit slips, or account information to people you don't know.
- Never give your ATM card or PIN number to a stranger. Have your pension/social security checks directly deposited to your bank account.
- Help.org has many great resources for getting help with substance abuse.
Surviving an Active Shooter IncidentAs part of a city emergency preparedness program, the city of Houston, Texas and the Department of Homeland Security have produced a video training program describing what to do if confronted with an active shooter situation. Houston Police Department has given permission for other departments to make this video available to their citizens.
The Walnut Creek Police Department encourages all residents to view this video and to mentally prepare themselves for the unlikely, but still frightening, possibility that they may someday need to Run, Hide, Fight.
Run. Hide. Fight. Surviving an Active Shooter Event