Bloomingdale Substation Rolls Into Third Year At New Location

Rolling into its third year of operation the Hillsborough County Sherriff’s Office (HCSO) District IV Bloomingdale Community Substation at its new residence, continues to provide all the necessary support to residents living in the FishHawk, Bloomingdale and the surrounding communities.

Located at 3622 Erindale Dr. in Valrico, directly behind Car Wash on the Greens, just north of the Erindale Plaza, the 1,225-sq.-ft. office was a much welcomed addition to the neighborhood. It also provided extra room for deputies, detectives and members of the HCSO Volunteer Citizen Patrol to get their work done.

The new station, led by Community Resource Master Deputy (CRD) Curtis Warren and assisted by Community Service Officer Sandra Capitano, sports some extra office space, three additional private offices for detectives, such as property crime detective James Howell, not to mention a more discreet spot for fingerprinting and a private room for questioning suspects.

“It’s a beautiful building at a great location,” Warren said.

Warren was pleased to see all that has been accomplished so far, as the small staff handles community complaints, responds to property crime, handles fraud reports, works with residents through the citizen’s patrol program and the hosts monthly community council meetings on the third Thursday of each month.

During one of its most recent meetings, the council discussed a number of topics, including residential burglary, vehicle burglary, home security and updates on current scams.

Residential Burglary

Warren said that home security continues to be a major concern, especially with the summer months and residents leaving the area on vacations, and added that properly preparing a home before leaving town is extremely critical.

“Don’t let the bad guys know you’re gone,” Warren said. “Make arrangements with a neighbor or friend to keep an eye on your home, mow the yard if necessary, discontinue newspapers, arrange for your mail to be put on hold and set light timers to deter burglars.”

Utility Scams

Switching to the topic of utility scams, the council emphasized that in the past several weeks, local utility companies have received calls claiming that the customer’s account will be disconnected shortly because of an unsigned check or unpaid balance and request a credit card number to avoid the disconnection.

“At least two customers have fallen for this scam and gave their credit card numbers, which were then used illegally,” Warren said.

Anyone who receives a call of this type should contact Progress Energy at 1-800-700-8744 or Tampa Electric at 1-888-223-0800.

Prepare For Disasters

The staff at the Bloomingdale substation continues to urge residents to take disaster preparedness seriously.

With several storms such as Tropical Storm Isaac already on the list for the season, emergency officials who track hurricanes ask that everyone remember that it only takes one.

Important emergency preparation information can be found at www.hillsboroughcounty.org in the Emergency Management site.

Hurricane Guides can be found at www.tprc.org/tampabaydisaster/hurricane_guides2012.shtml.

For information, please call the station at 635-8040 or visit www.hcso.tampa.fl.us