Iowa HSEMD reminds the public to stay vigilant, report suspicious behavior

After the most recent terrorist attacks in New York City and Las Vegas, the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEMD) would like to remind everyone of the need to be on alert in public spaces, so that any possible future incidents may be thwarted.

Anyone who wishes to report suspicious behavior they have witnessed should call 9-1-1 or their local law enforcement agency. The Iowa State Sheriffs and Deputies Association has a link with their member directory on their website. Or, you can contact your city police department.

If you SEE Something, SAY SomethingTM!

What is suspicious behavior?

Suspicious activity is any observed behavior that could indicate terrorism or terrorism-related crime. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Unusual items or situations: A vehicle is parked in an odd location, a package/luggage is unattended, a window/door is open that is usually closed, or other out-of-the-ordinary situations occur.
  • Eliciting information: A person questions individuals at a level beyond curiosity about a building’s purpose, operations, security procedures and/or personnel, shift changes, etc.
  • Observation/surveillance: Someone pays unusual attention to facilities or buildings beyond a casual or professional interest. This includes extended loitering without explanation (particularly in concealed locations); unusual, repeated, and/or prolonged observation of a building (e.g., with binoculars or video camera); taking notes or measurements; counting paces; sketching floor plans, etc.

Some of these activities could be innocent, but it's up to law enforcement to determine whether the behavior warrants investigation. The activities above are not all-inclusive, but have been compiled based on studies of pre-operational aspects of both successful and thwarted terrorist events over several years.

Additional contact information

Report immigration-related suspicious behavior to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) by calling 1-866-347-2423.

If there is an emergency, call 9-1-1. Do not report suspicious activity through this website.

Michael Ehret
Dickinson County Courthouse
1802 Hill Ave, Ste B103
  Spirit Lake, IA 51360
43.422°, -95.103°
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